VA doctors are among a team of researchers at the Cleveland Functional Electrical Stimulation Center restoring respiratory muscle function to Veterans and individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI). Doctors Anthony DiMarco and Krzysztof Kowalski developed the first method in the world that can activate expiratory muscles (abdominal and lower rib cage muscles), using minimally invasive techniques to produce an effective cough.
This system to restore cough can be used safely and effectively in conjunction with a diaphragm pacing system to restore breathing. Individuals with cervical level SCI that are fully dependent on a ventilator can often use an alternative method called diaphragm pacing. This method provides a more natural form of breathing by stimulating the diaphragm.
You can read more about it HERE.