FES assisted activities such as standing, walking, cycling and rowing induce forces within the leg bones and have been proposed to reduce osteoporosis in spinal cord injury (SCI). However, details of the applied mechanical stimulus for osteogenesis is often not reported. Typically, comparisons of bone density results are made after costly and time consuming clinical trials. These studies have produced inconsistent results and are subject to sample size variations. Here we propose a design process that may be used to predict the clinical outcome based on biomechanical simulation and mechano-biology. This method may allow candidate therapies to be optimized and quantitatively compared. To illustrate the approach we have used data obtained from a rower with complete paraplegia using the RowStim (III) system.
FES; Spinal cord injury; Osteoporosis; Bone stress, FES rowing