Our quest is to find the most progressive and promising spinal cord injury research and rehabilitative methods available.

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NextSteps Chicago Spinal Cord Injury Center


O'Connor Foundation dba as NextSteps Chicago is an IL 501C non-profit.

NextSteps Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Rehabilitation Center is the first non-profit physical therapy and exercise facility devoted to the rehabilitation and overall wellness of people with SCI in the Chicago area. NextSteps' mission is to provide the Chicagoland SCI community with affordable, dynamic, and progressive spinal cord injury rehabilitation while utilizing technologically advanced equipment and personalized physical therapy and exercise therapy.

NextSteps provides treatment for chronic and acute SCI clients with the latest advances and knowledge in treating spinal cord injuries. NextSteps practices the latest protocols in activity based motion therapies that help SCI clients regain function and sensation even after years of paralysis.

NextSteps' quest is to find the most progressive and promising spinal cord injury research and rehabilitative methods available. After traveling the nation and seeking out various research and therapy methods, NextSteps gained the support of leading researchers such as Dr. John McDonald of Washington University/John Hopkins, and the support of Pat Rummerfield, a recovered quadriplegic SCI.

NextSteps is devoted to offering spinal cord injury patients a post-hospital exercise/rehab facility that will aid them in taking their next step towards a more functional, independent, and healthy lifestyle. Not only is NextSteps committed to helping the SCI community regain a higher quality of life, but also to support the advancement of spinal cord specific scientific research that will aid in the treatment of spinal cord injury.

  • Aggressive physical therapy and exercise training to enable maximum recovery that will also aid in the prevention of secondary conditions such as pressure sores, cardiovascular disease, and muscle atrophy.
  • Implementation of the latest innovative equipment and medical research information as it becomes available.
  • Motivated training within an upbeat and positive treatment environment as our clients prepare their bodies for emerging SCI medical technologies.
  • Apply for grants to receive low-cost exercise therapy and transportation to SCI clients whom otherwise would not be able to engage in post-hospital rehabilitation.
  • Association with cutting-edge researchers who are involved in clinical trials such as Locomotor training.


It's Never Too Late

Whether your injury is new or you've had it for years, starting an exercise program now can avoid or reverse "learned non-use" in affected muscle groups. Muscle atrophy and neural circuits turn off with disuse. Building and maintaining muscle mass keeps tissues in paralyzed limbs. Our goal is to help you achieve an optimum quality of life through exercise.

All clients receive a free tour with a staff member. Upon completion of complete intake paperwork, payment agreement and/or a medical prescription for physical therapy, you will be contacted to schedule an initial physical therapy evaluation, during which long and short term goals are established by the physical therapist and patient.

Sessions are two to four hours in duration on average, 2 to 3 times a week. However, after initial Physical Therapy evaluation, most appropriate duration and frequency will be determined on a case by case basis. Any cervical, thoracic, or lumbar injury is accepted for both acute and chronic treatment. Future grants will offer lower hourly rates for qualified individuals. Billing will be monthly and clients must pay in advance.

Please call for pricing.
708-467-0657

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