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Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals

Spinal cord injury survivor determined to walk again

September 15, 2017

Spinal cord injury survivor Koby Truesdell uses the Lokomat to help with gait retraining with the help of physical therapist Kristi Rocole . 

With every step he takes, Koby Truesdell is one step closer to his goal of walking. "I know I’m going to walk again. It’s just a matter of time," said Koby.

“Koby’s always been very positive, ever since he was a little boy. He’s just always been positive. There’s nothing he couldn’t really do. And if he couldn’t do it, he’d move on. And he’d try it again,” said Teresa Vaughn, Koby's mom. 

“I’ve never let anything keep me down. I always see the best in every situation. That’s just the way my mind’s always worked,” said Koby.

In early May 2017, Koby suffered a spinal cord injury after a diving accident at a Florida beach. Initially unable to move his arms and legs, through therapy at Madonna’s Lincoln Campus, Koby slowly started regaining strength and movement. First in his right leg. Then in his left.

“Low gravity therapy you have in the pool really gets things going. I noticed after the second time in the pool my left leg started wiggling and moving,” said Koby.

“Muscles are getting stronger, the left leg started moving a little bit and now he’s moving it more. And it is baby steps,” said Teresa. 

Baby steps in the pool and using specialized equipment like the Lokomat to help with gait retraining. 

“The Lokomat - it’s really a good piece of equipment, makes you feel like you are walking again or that it is going to happen,” said Koby.

“You just have to be really patient and build yourself up because I’ve never had to be this strong in my entire life and it’s been difficult but then with him being so positive, boy, that sure helped me too,” said Teresa.

“Work hard and push through the pain sometimes so to speak. Everything’s going to be all right. Whether you’re a complete or an incomplete, we can all make progress in our everyday lives. Madonna’s a great place for that," said Koby.

Learn more about Madonna's spinal cord injury program.