Development of a novel task-oriented rehabilitation program using a bimanual exoskeleton robotic hand

Yi Mei Chen, Szu Shen Lai, Yu Cheng Pei, Chia Ju Hsieh*, Wei Han Chang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

A robot-assisted hand is used for the rehabilitation of patients with impaired upper limb function, particularly for stroke patients with a loss of motor control. However, it is unclear how conventional occupational training strategies can be applied to the use of rehabilitation robots. Novel robotic technologies and occupational therapy concepts are used to develop a protocol that allows patients with impaired upper limb function to grasp objects using their affected hand through a variety of pinching and grasping functions. To conduct this appropriately, we used five types of objects: a peg, a rectangular cube, a cube, a ball, and a cylindrical bar. We also equipped the patients with a robotic hand, the Mirror Hand, an exoskeleton hand that is fitted to the subject’s affected hand and follows the movement of the sensor glove fitted to their unaffected hand (bimanual movement training (BMT)). This study had two stages. Three healthy subjects were first recruited to test the feasibility and acceptability of the training program. Three patients with hand dysfunction caused by stroke were then recruited to confirm the feasibility and acceptability of the training program, which was conducted on 3 consecutive days. On each day, the patient was monitored during 5 min of movement in a passive range of motion, 5 min of robot-assisted bimanual movement, and task-oriented training using the five objects. The results showed that both healthy subjects and subjects who had suffered a stroke in conjunction with the robotic hand could successfully grasp the objects. Both healthy subjects and those who had suffered a stroke performed well with the robot-assisted task-oriented training program in terms of feasibility and acceptability.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere61057
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Volume2020
Issue number159
DOIs
StatePublished - 05 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Journal of Visualized Experiments.

Keywords

  • Exoskeleton hand
  • Hand function
  • Issue 159
  • Medicine
  • Rehabilitation
  • Robot-assisted therapy
  • Stroke
  • Task-oriented rehabilitation

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