A Semi-passive Planar Manipulandum for Upper-Extremity Rehabilitation

A Semi-passive Planar Manipulandum for Upper-Extremity Rehabilitation Robotic rehabilitation is a promising approach to treat individuals with neurological or orthopedic disorders. However, despite significant advancements in the field of rehabilitation robotics, this technology has found limited traction in clinical practice. A key reason for this issue is that most robots are expensive, bulky, and not scalable for in-home rehabilitation. Here, we introduce a semi-passive rehabilitation robot (SepaRRo) that uses controllable passive actuators (i.e., brakes) to provide controllable resistances at the end-effector over a large workspace in a manner that is cost-effective and safe for in-home use. We also validated the device through theoretical analyses, hardware experiments, and human subject experiments. We found that by including kinematic redundancies in the robot’s linkages, the device was able to provide controllable resistances to purely resist the movement of the end-effector, or to gently steer (i.e., perturb) its motion away from the intended path. When testing these capabilities on human subjects, we found that many of the upper-extremity muscles could be selectively targeted based on the forcefield prescribed to the user. These results indicate that SepaRRo could serve as a low-cost therapeutic tool for upper-extremity rehabilitation; however, further testing is required to evaluate its therapeutic benefits in patient population. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Annals of Biomedical Engineering Springer Journals

A Semi-passive Planar Manipulandum for Upper-Extremity Rehabilitation

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2018 by Biomedical Engineering Society
Subject
Biomedicine; Biomedicine, general; Biomedical Engineering; Biological and Medical Physics, Biophysics; Classical Mechanics; Biochemistry, general
ISSN
0090-6964
eISSN
1573-9686
D.O.I.
10.1007/s10439-018-2020-z
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Robotic rehabilitation is a promising approach to treat individuals with neurological or orthopedic disorders. However, despite significant advancements in the field of rehabilitation robotics, this technology has found limited traction in clinical practice. A key reason for this issue is that most robots are expensive, bulky, and not scalable for in-home rehabilitation. Here, we introduce a semi-passive rehabilitation robot (SepaRRo) that uses controllable passive actuators (i.e., brakes) to provide controllable resistances at the end-effector over a large workspace in a manner that is cost-effective and safe for in-home use. We also validated the device through theoretical analyses, hardware experiments, and human subject experiments. We found that by including kinematic redundancies in the robot’s linkages, the device was able to provide controllable resistances to purely resist the movement of the end-effector, or to gently steer (i.e., perturb) its motion away from the intended path. When testing these capabilities on human subjects, we found that many of the upper-extremity muscles could be selectively targeted based on the forcefield prescribed to the user. These results indicate that SepaRRo could serve as a low-cost therapeutic tool for upper-extremity rehabilitation; however, further testing is required to evaluate its therapeutic benefits in patient population.

Journal

Annals of Biomedical EngineeringSpringer Journals

Published: Apr 6, 2018

References

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