Marquette University: Researchers receive grant to study treatment for caregivers of military-related spinal cord injuries


Name: Christopher Stolarski

Phone: (414) 288-1988

Email: [email protected]

MILWAUKEE – Marquette University’s Opus College of Engineering has received a $496,000, three-year grant from the Department of Defense to research the adjustments caregivers must undergo when treating veterans and military members with spinal cord injury.

Dr. Gerald Harris, professor of biomedical engineering and director of the Orthopedic and Rehabilitation Engineering Center at Marquette, will act as the project investigator; Dr. Erin Kelly, adjunct research associate professor of biomedical engineering at Marquette, will contribute to the research.

“This study focuses on veterans who suffered debilitating injuries,” Harris said. “Developing a support network during the most difficult days post diagnosis is so important for long-term health.”

The research will identify supports and barriers to successful adjustment, particularly focusing on attending to differences between military and civilian populations. The work is directly relevant to the adjustment of the spouses or other family members who care for men and women who have sustained spinal cord injury as veterans or while serving in the military.

A Marquette faculty member since 1987, Harris’ research interests include rehabilitation engineering, orthopaedic biomechanics, and human motion analysis. He has published more than 300 refereed articles on biomechanical engineering topics including three edited texts. Harris is a fellow of the IEEE, Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, and the Biomedical Engineering Society.

Media interested in speaking with Harris can contact Chris Stolarski, senior communication strategist, at (414) 288-1988.