Rehabilitation Robot for Stroke Patient Hemiparesis
An exoskeleton device was created to rehabilitate stroke patients with hemiparesis, a muscle weakness or paralysis on one side of the body. Hemiparesis affects approximately 500,000 people within the United States every year. The current standard of care utilizes systems that are bulky and expensive. Development of an effective and affordable technology that can be utilized with minimal assistance from medical professionals is needed. A device was created to promote the recovery of fine motor function in the hand by improving range of motion through flexion and extension of the fingers. This device utilizes a feedback system controlled by amplified electromyography (EMG) signals generated by the forearm muscles that control the hand. When the EMG sensors detect the patient’s muscle activation, an electromechanical system assists in the desired movement of the phalanges. This system uses linear actuators and a 3D-printed exoskeleton on each finger to create the kinematic motion. This system promotes active involvement by the patient while performing grasping exercises, which are a key component of fine motor control rehabilitation. The device has been tested to ensure it can assist a patient in completing a full range of motion of the phalangeal joints.
Bottelberghe, Jessica; Conger, Noah; Johnson, Stephanie; Warburton, Kevin; Oren, Blake; Travis, Daniel; Williams, Justin; Catlin, Lynn; Higgins, Brian; and Booth, Eric, "Rehabilitation Robot for Stroke Patient Hemiparesis" (2015). College of Engineering Presentations. 16.