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What is FES?

Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES)

FES is small pulses of electrical stimulation to the nerves that supply paralysed muscles.

The stimulation is controlled in such a way that the movement produced provides useful function.

The technique is used as an aid to assist walking as well as practising functional movements for therapeutic benefit.

The most common use of FES is for people with drop foot. Read more about drop foot here.

Click here to read our clinical evidence.

How does FES work?

In simple terms, FES works like this to help with drop foot:

  • Our Odstock Dropped Foot Stimulator (ODFS®) sends signals to the self-adhesive electrodes that are placed on the skin over the nerves.
  • The stimulator creates small electrical pulses. This causes the muscles in your leg to contract and moves your joints.
  • A small footswitch in your shoe times the stimulation to your walking.

Odstock Medical Ltd (OML)

We provide a range of neuromuscular stimulators designed to improve the functional ability of people with a neurological condition.

The devices have been developed over many years of collaboration between clinical engineers, clinicians and patients at the National Clinical FES Centre, Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust.

Click here to find out more about OML.

Please note: Some of the devices (ODFS® & O2CHS) can only be applied by qualified trained medical personnel. All personnel must be approved by the National Clinical FES Centre.

If you are interested in becoming qualified FES clinician, see our FES courses page.

FES equipment is not available to the general public without a referral from their GP or consultant.