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Veteran gets help walking with new device

Posted at 6:16 PM, Feb 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-26 20:23:02-05

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - A new device is helping a veteran walk again after he suffered a stroke.

Mark Lazarcheff is serving at Fort Huachuca as a Sr. Intelligence Analyst. Since having a stroke in Oct. 2013, walking has been very difficult and painful for him.

"Pain is debilitating, let me tell you. There's nothing like neuropathy. You don't sleep, you're always like, can't get comfortable. It's a nightmare," said Lazarcheff.

He said the difficulty has stopped him from doing his favorite things, including riding his Harley Davidson motorcycles, traveling with his wife and playing with his 8-year-old daughter.

"I missed her first father/daughter dance and I don't want to miss anymore," said Lazarcheff.

While trying to make that possible, Lazarcheff stumbled upon the "Kickstart." It's a new device that will allow him to walk again.

It mimics the tendons of a horse, which stretch from the hip to the ankle, unlike a human tendon.

"Every step they take the 'exo-tendon' stretches and it stores energy, and that provides a lot of support and stability. And then as they end the step, it will also lift the leg off the ground and swing it through for the next step," said Brian Glaister, President and CEO of Cadence Biomedical, which created the Kickstart.

The device works like mobile physical therapy, which works to make patients eventually walk without the Kickstart needed.