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Israeli invention helps paralysed woman finish race

    Claire Lomas crosses the finish line (Photo: BBC)
    Claire Lomas crosses the finish line (Photo: BBC)

    A woman who is paralysed from the chest down has completed the Great North Run wearing an Israeli exoskeleton.

    Claire Lomas, who has also finished the London Marathon, took five days to walk the half marathon in the ReWalk suit, created by Israeli entrepreneur Amit Goffer after he was paralysed in a car crash.

    The exoskeleton senses the user’s motions and provides them with the power to make stronger hip and knee movements.

    Mrs Lomas, who is 16 weeks pregnant, told the BBC the 13.1-mile race from Newcastle to South Shields was harder than those she had previously walked.

    “It’s been the hardest five days. I’m so, so tired. Loads of times, I thought: ‘I’m not going to make it.’ It was really emotional, and really hard not to start crying.

    “I had quite a lot of morning sickness. I didn't have the lead-up I wanted, but I really did not want to lose this opportunity,” she added.

    Last week, ReWalk announced it had made its hundredth sale to private customers. The most recent version of the suit, which Mrs Lomas wore, costs £58,000.

    The 36-year-old sportswoman from Leicestershire had her neck, back and ribs broken and a lung punctured when she was thrown off her horse in racing trials nine years ago.

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