Post-Stroke Neuro-Rehabilitation Device

Stroke is one of the leading causes of adult disability in the world, with more than 15 million cases every year. Most stroke survivors suffer from hemiparesis, a paralysis of one side of the body, resulting in a severe decrease in their ability to perform typical activities of daily living. Rehabilitation centres will typically focus on regaining the ability to walk, as well as on shoulder and elbow function, often having only limited time to work on the hand and fingers. Additionally, physiotherapy sessions are limited by costs and the amount of available personnel. In the long-term, patients will tend to use their unaffected hand to grab and manipulate objects, eat and write, resulting in a re-increase of muscle tone and spasticity in the affected hand and sustained muscle weakness.

Robotic rehabilitation systems offer increased therapy under well-controlled conditions and with on-line feedback and assessment of the patient‘s motor function. In addition, exercises can be embedded in motivating games, allowing a variety of exercises with a given device. Current rehabilitation systems are often large, complex and costly devices such as arm exoskeletons, requiring technical assistance and making them unsuited for decentralised use, e.g. at home. Passive objects generally used in rehabilitation such as balls, pegs, cups, etc., in return, provide neither feedback nor motivation.

Research has led to the development of a safe, simple and cost-effective therapy to regain and maintain finger function, for patients suffering e.g. from stroke, spinal cord injury or other motor dysfunctions.

The active system consists of both force and pressure sensors and vibrotactile stimulators controlled via a PC. The device provides a wide variety of motivating game-like exercises with visual and auditory feedback. The system can serve as well for training as for assessment, and allows remote monitoring. Assessments can be used to automatically adapt the difficulty of exercises to the state of the patient.

Patent Status A patent has been filed and the owner is currently seeking licensing partners.

Case 4472

Type of Offer: Licensing

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