[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 15-Aug-2012
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Contact: Carolann Murphy
CMurphy@KesslerFoundation.org
973-324-8382
Kessler Foundation

Kessler Foundation researchers present findings at September ASCIP Conference

Experts in rehabilitation research share studies that improve lives of people with disabilities. Topics include new approaches to improving mobility and cognition, minimizing pain, determining prognosis and addressing health disparities

West Orange, NJ. August 15, 2012. Scientists from Kessler Foundation are presenting recent findings in spinal cord injury research during Beyond Boundaries: the 2012 Conference of the Academy of Spinal Cord Injury Professionals (ASCIP). John DeLuca, PhD, Steven Kirshblum, MD, Trevor Dyson-Hudson, MD, Gail F. Forrest, PhD, Denise Fyffe, PhD, and Rachel Byrne, are addressing a variety of topics at this multidisciplinary conference. Topics include new approaches to improving mobility and cognition, minimizing pain, determining prognosis and addressing health disparities. The ASCIP conference is being held at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, September 3-6. Attendees represent the ASCIP's membership of clinicians and researchers in medicine, science, psychology, nursing, therapy, and social work.

John DeLuca, PhD, VP of Research & Training at Kessler Foundation is giving the James J. Peters Memorial Lecture, named for the executive director of United Spinal Association who was a tireless advocate for people with spinal cord injury. Dr. DeLuca, a well-known expert in cognitive rehabilitation research, will discuss the cognitive issues that are often under recognized in patients with multiple sclerosis. Dr. Steven Kirshblum's topic for the Jayanthi Lecture is determining prognosis for the individual with acute injury. Drs. Kirshblum and Dyson-Hudson are co-directors of the Northern New Jersey SCI Model System at Kessler Foundation. Dr. Dyson-Hudson is presenting the model system's research on preventing pneumonia after spinal cord injury, as well as results of a pilot study on the use of platelet-rich plasma therapy for shoulder pain in wheelchair users with spinal cord injury.

Dr. Forrest's presentations address the scope of her innovative applications of technological advances for mobility after spinal cord injury. Drs. Forrest, Kirshblum, and colleagues, will discuss their clinical research experience with robotic exoskeletal devices, including their potential for affecting long-term health and well-being in the SCI population. Dr. Fyffe, an expert in health disparities, is an author on two posters: "Qualitative study of the impact of blood pressure dysregulation on quality of life in SCI" and "Self-reported symptoms of blood pressure dysregulation in persons with spinal cord injury." This research is VA funded and conducted in collaboration with researchers at the James J. Peters VA Medical Center.

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About SCI Research at Kessler Foundation

Through the NNJSCIS, funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the Foundation collaborates on research in mobility, secondary medical complications, access to care, and quality of life. The Kessler NRN site is one of 6 centers in the Reeve Foundation's NeuroRecovery Network researching intensive locomotor training in SCI. Innovative studies are also being conducted with Ekso (Ekso Bionics), the bionic exoskeletal device, the LokomatPro v6 (Hocoma), a robotic treadmill training device, and with functional electrical stimulation. Additional funding sources include the National Institutes of Health, New Jersey Commission on Spinal Cord Research, The Craig H. Neilsen Foundation, the Veterans Administration, and Kessler Foundation. The Foundation, which has a model system for traumatic brain injury (NNJTBIS), is also widely known for cognitive rehabilitation research in brain injury, multiple sclerosis and stroke.

About Kessler Foundation

Kessler Foundation is one of the largest public charities in the field of disability. Kessler Foundation Research Center focuses on improving function and quality of life for persons with injuries of the spinal cord and brain, stroke, multiple sclerosis, and other chronic neurological conditions. Kessler Foundation Program Center fosters new approaches to the persistently high rates of unemployment among people disabled by injury or disease. Targeted grantmaking funds promising programs across the nation. Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, people recovering from catastrophic injuries and stroke, and young adults striving for independence are among the thousands of people finding jobs and training for careers as a result of the commitment of Kessler Foundation.

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