Project Status: In Development
Problem: For patients with chronic loss of limb motion, such as with stroke victims, it is essential to restore the brain functions linking desired and actual limb motion. This retraining of the brain can be accomplished by repetitions of fairly simple limb motions. One way to do this is to allow the patient to see some visual representation of desired limb position compared to desired limb position. The patient would then consciously adjust the actual to the desired position. Other ways of motivating a patient to accomplish repetitions of limb motions may be possible also.
Design Approach: Neumimic™ is a physical therapy system being developed by US Air Force Academy cadets which helps patients with chronic loss of limb motion--such as with stroke victims. The specially designed software and multi-directional arm brace work in conjunction with Microsoft Xbox Kinect® to allow patients to compare actual motions with desired motions on the display. In doing so, the brain can be trained to effectively regain the limb’s lost functionality. The Director of Rehabilitation at Penrose-St. Francis Hospital, Dr. Glen House, is providing oversight on this project.