Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Path control: a method for patient-cooperative robot-aided gait rehabilitation


Duschau-Wicke, A; von Zitzewitz, J; Caprez, A; Lunenburger, L; Riener, R (2010). Path control: a method for patient-cooperative robot-aided gait rehabilitation. IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, 18(1):38-48.

Abstract

Gait rehabilitation robots are of increasing importance in neurorehabilitation. Conventional devices are often criticized because they are limited to reproducing predefined movement patterns. Research on patient-cooperative control strategies aims at improving robotic behavior. Robots should support patients only as much as needed and stimulate them to produce maximal voluntary efforts. This paper presents a patient-cooperative strategy that allows patients to influence the timing of their leg movements along a physiologically meaningful path. In this "path control" strategy, compliant virtual walls keep the patient's legs within a "tunnel" around the desired spatial path. Additional supportive torques enable patients to move along the path with reduced effort. Graphical feedback provides visual training instructions. The path control strategy was evaluated with 10 healthy subjects and 15 subjects with incomplete spinal cord injury. The spatio-temporal characteristics of recorded kinematic data showed that subjects walked with larger temporal variability with the new strategy. Electromyographic data indicated that subjects were training more actively. A majority of iSCI subjects was able to actively control their gait timing. Thus, the strategy allows patients to train walking while being helped rather than controlled by the robot.

Abstract

Gait rehabilitation robots are of increasing importance in neurorehabilitation. Conventional devices are often criticized because they are limited to reproducing predefined movement patterns. Research on patient-cooperative control strategies aims at improving robotic behavior. Robots should support patients only as much as needed and stimulate them to produce maximal voluntary efforts. This paper presents a patient-cooperative strategy that allows patients to influence the timing of their leg movements along a physiologically meaningful path. In this "path control" strategy, compliant virtual walls keep the patient's legs within a "tunnel" around the desired spatial path. Additional supportive torques enable patients to move along the path with reduced effort. Graphical feedback provides visual training instructions. The path control strategy was evaluated with 10 healthy subjects and 15 subjects with incomplete spinal cord injury. The spatio-temporal characteristics of recorded kinematic data showed that subjects walked with larger temporal variability with the new strategy. Electromyographic data indicated that subjects were training more actively. A majority of iSCI subjects was able to actively control their gait timing. Thus, the strategy allows patients to train walking while being helped rather than controlled by the robot.

Statistics

Citations

92 citations in Web of Science®
137 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

205 downloads since deposited on 08 Jul 2010
50 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Balgrist University Hospital, Swiss Spinal Cord Injury Center
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:February 2010
Deposited On:08 Jul 2010 15:22
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:10
Publisher:IEEE
ISSN:1534-4320
Additional Information:© 2010 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1109/TNSRE.2009.2033061
PubMed ID:20194054

Download

Preview Icon on Download
Preview
Filetype: PDF
Size: 2MB
View at publisher