Thursday, 19 March 2015
Robotic glove to aid stroke victim rehabilitation
Research involving RAT group's Prof Gail Mountain and Dr Nasrin Nasr is featured in Business Weekly on the 11thMarch, 2015:
University of Hertfordshire scientists are part of a European team that have developed a prototype of a robotic glove which stroke suffers can use at home to support rehabilitation.
At the chronic stages of stroke, patients are not likely to be receiving treatment but they continue to live with some impairments - the scientific team believes the glove can provide therapies to target these impairments.
Dr Farshid Amirabdollahian, an expert in rehabilitation robotics and assistive technologies and a senior lecturer in adaptive systems at the University of Hertfordshire’s School of Computer Science co-ordinated the €4,643,983 project called SCRIPT (Supervised Care and Rehabilitation Involving Personal Tele-robotics).
Over the past three years the team developed two prototype robotic gloves, which facilitate repetitive movement and exercise of the hand and wrist. The device also records the patient's performance and sends this to a therapist for tailoring treatment remotely and arranging follow-up.
Dr Amirabdollahian said: "This project focused on therapies for stroke patients at home. Our goal was to make motivating therapies available to people to practise at home using this system, hoping that they have a vested interest to practise and will do so. We tried this system with 30 patients and found that patients indeed practised at home, on average around 100 minutes each week, and some showed clinical improvements in their hand and arm function".
The aim of the project was to provide an educational, motivational and engaging interaction, making a more positive therapy session for the patient, while providing feedback to them and their health care professionals. The project was partially funded by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme.
The team is now considering a follow-up project to improve recovery outcomes, while also searching for funding to turn this prototype into a product for home rehabilitation.
The team has passed the proof-of-concept stage and is now looking at getting the glove into production.
Project partners are: R.U. Robots Limited (UK), University of Sheffield (UK), Universiteit Twente (Netherlands), Roessingh Research and Development BV (Netherlands), MOOG BV (Netherlands), San Raffaele S.p.A (Italy). and User Interface Design GMBH (Germany).
See the device in action on YouTube and visit the project's website to find out more - http://scriptproject.eu/
- See more here.