131 results match your criteria Assistive Devices to Improve Independence


Use and evaluation of assistive technologies for upper limb function in tetraplegia.

J Spinal Cord Med 2021 Feb 19:1-12. Epub 2021 Feb 19.

School of Engineering, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK.

Context: More than half of all spinal cord injuries (SCI) occur at the cervical level leading to loss of upper limb function, restricted activity and reduced independence. Several technologies have been developed to assist with upper limb functions in the SCI population.

Objective: There is no clear clinical consensus on the effectiveness of the current assistive technologies for the cervical SCI population, hence this study reviews the literature in the years between 1999 and 2019. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
February 2021

User-centred assistive SystEm for arm Functions in neUromuscuLar subjects (USEFUL): a randomized controlled study.

J Neuroeng Rehabil 2021 01 6;18(1). Epub 2021 Jan 6.

NeuroEngineering And medical Robotics Laboratory, NearLab, Department of Electronics, Information, and Bioengineering, Politecnico di Milano, Via Giuseppe Colombo 40, 20133, Milan, Italy.

Background: Upper limb assistive devices can compensate for muscular weakness and empower the user in the execution of daily activities. Multiple devices have been recently proposed but there is still a lack in the scientific comparison of their efficacy.

Methods: We conducted a cross-over multi-centric randomized controlled trial to assess the functional improvement at the upper limb level of two arms supports on 36 patients with muscular dystrophy. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
January 2021

Detecting physical abilities through smartphone sensors: an assistive technology application.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 Dec 1:1-12. Epub 2020 Dec 1.

Faculty of Science & Technology, Bournemouth University, Poole, UK.

Purpose: It is important to promote assistive technologies to improve quality of life. The proposed SmartAbility Android Application recommends assistive technologies for people with reduced physical abilities, by focussing on actions that can be performed independently.

Materials And Methods: The SmartAbility Application uses Android built-in sensors, e. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
December 2020

Dynamic body-weight support to boost rehabilitation outcomes in patients with non-traumatic spinal cord injury: an observational study.

J Neuroeng Rehabil 2020 11 30;17(1):157. Epub 2020 Nov 30.

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Kentucky, 2050 Versailles Road, Lexington, KY, 40504, USA.

Background: Dynamic body-weight support (DBWS) may play an important role in rehabilitation outcomes, but the potential benefit among disease-specific populations is unclear. In this study, we hypothesize that overground therapy with DBWS during inpatient rehabilitation yields greater functional improvement than standard-of-care in adults with non-traumatic spinal cord injury (NT-SCI).

Methods: This retrospective cohort study included individuals diagnosed with NT-SCI and undergoing inpatient rehabilitation. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
November 2020

The use and perception of support walkers for children with disabilities: a United Kingdom survey.

BMC Pediatr 2020 11 18;20(1):528. Epub 2020 Nov 18.

College of Health, Medicine and Health Sciences, Brunel University London, London, UK.

Background: Support walkers are a type of assistive device that may enable non-ambulant children with disabilities to walk independently and promote improvements in bowel function, bone mineral density (BMD), mobility, independence, participation and social function. However, there is little evidence to support these benefits and there is a lack of research describing the use of support walkers in clinical practice. This study aimed to examine the use of support walkers for children with disabilities in clinical practice. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
November 2020

Evaluation of the quality and the provision process of wheelchairs in Germany. Results from an online survey.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 Nov 9:1-10. Epub 2020 Nov 9.

Forschungsgruppe Geriatrie, Charité Universitatsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Background: Restrictions in mobility can lead to social and health-related issues. Assistive technologies and devices can help to sustain or regain mobility in affected persons. One of the most commonly used devices is the wheelchair. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
November 2020

[Perspectives of stakeholders on technology use in the care of community-living older adults with dementia].

Tijdschr Gerontol Geriatr 2020 Sep 25;51(3). Epub 2020 Jul 25.

Departement Tranzo, Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands.

Although technology has the potential to promote aging in place among community-living older adults with dementia, the use remains scarce. In this literature study we provide an overview of perspectives (i.e. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
September 2020

Smart home and communication technology for people with disability: a scoping review.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 Sep 12:1-21. Epub 2020 Sep 12.

Summer Foundation, Melbourne, Australia.

Purpose: The links between disability, activity limitation and participation restriction are well established. Recent and continued advancement of technology, particularly smart home and communication technologies, presents new ways in which some of the limitations and restrictions experienced by people with disabilities can be overcome. The aim of this scoping review was to explore the impact of smart home and communication technology on the outcomes of people with disabilities and complex needs. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
September 2020

Home-Based Cognitively Assistive Robots: Maximizing Cognitive Functioning and Maintaining Independence in Older Adults Without Dementia.

Clin Interv Aging 2020 13;15:1129-1139. Epub 2020 Jul 13.

Department of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA.

Promoting health and prolonging independence in the home is a priority for older adults, caregivers, clinicians, and society at large. Rapidly developing robotics technology provides a platform for interventions, with the fields of physically and socially assistive robots expanding in recent years. However, less attention has been paid to using robots to enhance the cognitive health of older adults. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
December 2020

Simulation System of Electric-Powered Wheelchairs for Training Purposes.

Sensors (Basel) 2020 Jun 24;20(12). Epub 2020 Jun 24.

Postgraduate Program in Electrical Engineering, Assistive Technology Center (NTA), Federal University of Espirito Santo (UFES), Vitoria 29075-910, Brazil.

For some people with severe physical disabilities, the main assistive device to improve their independence and to enhance overall well-being is an electric-powered wheelchair (EPW). However, there is a necessity to offer users EPW training. In this work, the Simcadrom is introduced, which is a virtual reality simulator for EPW driving learning purposes, testing of driving skills and performance, and testing of input interfaces. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

A review of methods for achieving upper limb movement following spinal cord injury through hybrid muscle stimulation and robotic assistance.

Exp Neurol 2020 06 5;328:113274. Epub 2020 Mar 5.

Rice University, Deptartment of Mechanical Engineering, Houston, TX 77005, USA. Electronic address:

Individuals with tetraplegia, typically attributed to spinal cord injuries (SCI) at the cervical level, experience significant health care costs and loss of independence due to their limited reaching and grasping capabilities. Neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) is a promising intervention to restore arm and hand function because it activates a person's own paralyzed muscles; however, NMES sometimes lacks the accuracy and repeatability necessary to position the limb for functional tasks, and repeated muscle stimulation can lead to fatigue. Robotic devices have the potential to restore function when used as assistive devices to supplement or replace limited or lost function of the upper limb following SCI. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Measuring the impact of age, gender and dementia on communication-robot interventions in residential care homes.

Geriatr Gerontol Int 2020 Apr 19;20(4):373-378. Epub 2020 Feb 19.

Universal Accessibility & Ageing Research Centre (UA-ARC), Nishitokyo, Japan.

Aim: The primary aim of this study was to examine the impact of age, gender and the stage of dementia on the results of an assistive technology intervention that make use of communication robots (com-robots). The intervention was designed to improve the social participation and interactions of nursing home residents. While our previous study showed that the overall effects of com-robot intervention were positive, it was unknown what impact age, gender and the stage of dementia of participants had on such an intervention. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Evaluation Tools for Assistive Technologies: A Scoping Review.

Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2020 06 12;101(6):1025-1040. Epub 2020 Feb 12.

Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia; British Columbia Women's and Children's Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Electronic address:

Objective: Assistive technologies (ATs) support independence and well-being in people with cognitive, perceptual, and physical limitations. Given the increasing availability and diversity of ATs, evaluating the usefulness of current and emerging ATs is crucial for informed comparison. We aimed to chart the landscape and development of AT evaluation tools (ETs; ATETs) across disparate fields in order to improve the process of AT evaluation and development. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Impact of motor therapy with dynamic body-weight support on Functional Independence Measures in traumatic brain injury: An exploratory study.

NeuroRehabilitation 2019 Dec;45(4):519-524

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, USA.

Background: Contemporary goals of rehabilitation after traumatic brain injury (TBI) aim to improve cognitive and motor function by applying concepts of neuroplasticity. This can be challenging to carry out in TBI patients with motor, balance, and cognitive impairments.

Objective: To determine whether use of dynamic body-weight support (DBWS) would allow safe administration of intensive motor therapy during inpatient rehabilitation and whether its use would yield greater improvement in functional recovery than standard-of-care (SOC) therapy in adults with TBI. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
December 2019

Lived experiences of people with mobility-related disability using assistive devices.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2019 Dec 13:1-5. Epub 2019 Dec 13.

Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune, India.

Assistive devices (ADs) are an essential component for people with disability to achieve functional independence and improved quality of life. The current study explored lived experiences of adults with mobility related disability using ADs, with reference to access to ADs, facilitators and barriers in access, use and adaptation of devices and whether any changes experienced after use of ADs. Data were collected through interviews using narrative inquiry approach with 25 individuals having mobility related disabilities and who had experience of using one or more ADs for minimum 12 months. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
December 2019

Design and development of mobility equipment for persons with disabilities in low-resource and tropical settings: bamboo wheelchairs.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2021 May 3;16(4):377-383. Epub 2019 Dec 3.

Department of Chronic Disease Epidemiology, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, CT, USA.

Purpose: For persons with disabilities in low-resource and tropical settings, barriers to mobility and physical activity are steep. The aim of this study was to develop and test two low-cost, durable, sustainable, purpose-built wheelchair prototypes to support wheelchair users in low-resource and tropical settings. These bamboo wheelchairs, nicknamed African Chairs by Ghanaian daily manual wheelchair users who tested the devices, adopt two designs: an urban-targeted and a rural-targeted design. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Innovative Assisted Living Tools, Remote Monitoring Technologies, Artificial Intelligence-Driven Solutions, and Robotic Systems for Aging Societies: Systematic Review.

JMIR Aging 2019 Nov 29;2(2):e15429. Epub 2019 Nov 29.

Adelphi University, Garden City, NY, United States.

Background: The increase in life expectancy and recent advancements in technology and medical science have changed the way we deliver health services to the aging societies. Evidence suggests that home telemonitoring can significantly decrease the number of readmissions, and continuous monitoring of older adults' daily activities and health-related issues might prevent medical emergencies.

Objective: The primary objective of this review was to identify advances in assistive technology devices for seniors and aging-in-place technology and to determine the level of evidence for research on remote patient monitoring, smart homes, telecare, and artificially intelligent monitoring systems. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
November 2019

Assistive technologies for children with cognitive and/or motor disabilities: interviews as a means to diagnose the training needs of informal caregivers.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2021 Apr 5;16(3):340-349. Epub 2019 Nov 5.

Department of Education and Psychology, University of Aveiro, Aveiro, Portugal.

Purpose: The present study seeks to survey information and training needs of informal caregivers related to the use of assistive technologies at home, so as to, in the near future, try to meet them. Therefore, the full aim of this study is to contribute to reducing technology abandonment and to enhancing its use in the family setting by children with cognitive and/or motor limitations.

Materials And Methods: Content analysis of a set of ten interviews with informal caregivers of children and youngsters with cognitive and/or motor disabilities. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Exoscore: A Design Tool to Evaluate Factors Associated With Technology Acceptance of Soft Lower Limb Exosuits by Older Adults.

Hum Factors 2020 05 16;62(3):391-410. Epub 2019 Aug 16.

8808 University of Limerick, Ireland.

Objective: This pilot study proposed and performs initial testing with Exoscore, a design evaluation tool to assess factors related to acceptance of exoskeleton by older adults, during the technology development and testing phases.

Background: As longevity increases and our aging population continues to grow, assistive technologies such as exosuits and exoskeletons can provide enhanced quality of life and independence. Exoscore is a design and prototype stage evaluation method to assess factors related to perceptions of the technology, the aim being to optimize technology acceptance. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Eye-controlled, power wheelchair performs well for ALS patients.

Muscle Nerve 2019 11 21;60(5):513-519. Epub 2019 Aug 21.

Swedish Center for Research and Innovation, Seattle, Washington.

Background: Our pilot study tested the feasibility and performance of an eye-controlled power wheelchair for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients.

Methods: In this prospective pilot study, participants drove the wheelchair three times around an indoor course. We assessed the time to complete the course; starting and stopping on command; turning 90, 135, and 180 degrees; time to backup; and obstacle negotiation. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
November 2019

Semi-Autonomous Tongue Control of an Assistive Robotic Arm for Individuals with Quadriplegia.

IEEE Int Conf Rehabil Robot 2019 06;2019:157-162

Individuals suffering from quadriplegia can achieve increased independence by using an assistive robotic manipulator (ARM). However, due to their disability, the interfaces that can be used to operate such devices become limited. A versatile intraoral tongue control interface (ITCI) has previously been develop for this user group, as the tongue is usually spared from disability. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Influences of the biofeedback content on robotic post-stroke gait rehabilitation: electromyographic vs joint torque biofeedback.

J Neuroeng Rehabil 2019 07 23;16(1):95. Epub 2019 Jul 23.

Spinal Rehabilitation Laboratory - Neurological and Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Department A, Santa Lucia Foundation IRCCS, Via Ardeatina 306 -, 00179, Rome, Italy.

Background: Add-on robot-mediated therapy has proven to be more effective than conventional therapy alone in post-stroke gait rehabilitation. Such robot-mediated interventions routinely use also visual biofeedback tools. A better understanding of biofeedback content effects when used for robotic locomotor training may improve the rehabilitation process and outcomes. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Advanced weight-bearing mat exercises combined with functional electrical stimulation to improve the ability of wheelchair-dependent people with spinal cord injury to transfer and attain independence in activities of daily living: a randomized controlled trial.

Spinal Cord 2020 Jan 16;58(1):78-85. Epub 2019 Jul 16.

Departments of Medicine and Endocrinology, Austin Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

Study Design: Randomized controlled trial.

Objective: To determine the effects of advanced weight-bearing mat exercises (AWMEs) with/without functional electrical stimulation (FES) of the quadriceps and gastrocnemius muscles on the ability of wheelchair-dependent people with spinal cord injury (SCI) to transfer and attain independence in activities of daily living (ADLs).

Setting: An outpatient clinic, Iran. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
January 2020

Assistive technology based on client-centered for occupational performance in neuromuscular conditions.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2019 Jun;98(25):e15983

Faculty of Health Science, University of A Coruña, Spain.

Knowledge of the patient's own perception of functioning and dependence, and of environmental factors, is of significant value. The main goals of this study are (1) to obtain a general profile of the occupational performance of persons with neuromuscular disorders (NMD) and their needs related to that performance and (2) to determine the support resources (assistive technologies [AT], adjustment, and/or caregiver) required to improve or maintain their level of independence.This cross-sectional study involved 24 persons with NMD. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Cross-cultural adaptation of wheelchair skills test (version 4.3) for wheelchair users and caregivers to the Portuguese language (Brazil).

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 07 30;15(5):491-498. Epub 2019 May 30.

Department of Physiotherapy, Universidade Pitágoras Unopar (UNOPAR), Londrina, Brazil.

To perform cross-cultural adaptation of the Wheelchair Skills Test of manual wheelchair users and their caregivers into the Brazilian Portuguese language. The study was composed of translation, synthesis of translations, back-translation, review by an expert committee and pre-test, when the test was applied in the target population. Included were translators, subject specialists and coordinators to carry out the cross-cultural adaptation process, and manual wheelchair users and their caregivers with at least six months of wheelchair experience for the pre-test. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

Effect of Learning to Use a Mobility Aid on Gait and Cognitive Demands in People with Mild to Moderate Alzheimer's Disease: Part II - 4-Wheeled Walker.

J Alzheimers Dis 2019 ;71(s1):S115-S124

School of Occupational Therapy, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.

Background: Cognitive deficits and gait problems are common and progressive in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Prescription of a 4-wheeled walker is a common intervention to improve stability and independence, yet can be associated with an increased falls risk.

Objectives: 1) To examine changes in spatial-temporal gait parameters while using a 4-wheeled walker under different walking conditions, and 2) to determine the cognitive and gait task costs of walking with the aid in adults with AD and healthy older adults. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
October 2020

Understanding independent wheelchair transfers. Perspectives from stakeholders.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 07 23;15(5):545-552. Epub 2019 Apr 23.

University College London Interaction Centre, London, UK.

Transferring to and from the wheelchair is among the most important routine tasks for many wheelchair users. Transfers are also greatly affected by many personal and external factors. The purpose of this study is to investigate personal experiences, needs and concerns of wheelchair users in relation to wheelchair transfers performed in their everyday lives. Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF

An ecological perspective on implementing environmental control units for veterans with spinal cord injuries and disorders.

Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol 2020 01 19;15(1):67-75. Epub 2018 Nov 19.

Center of Innovation for Complex Chronic Healthcare, Department of Veterans Affairs, Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital, Hines, IL, USA.

Guided by an ecological perspective, the purpose of this study was to identify multilevel factors that influenced the implementation of environmental control units (ECUs) in Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Spinal Cord Injury/Disorders (SCI/D) Centres. Mixed methods including an online survey and qualitative interviews of VHA healthcare employees. VHA healthcare employees participated in the online survey ( = 153, 21% participation rate) and semi-structured interview ( = 28; 54% participation rate). Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
January 2020

Performance of Real-world Functional Tasks Using an Updated Oral Electronic Vision Device in Persons Blinded by Trauma.

Optom Vis Sci 2018 09;95(9):766-773

Lighthouse Guild, New York, New York

There is an immediate need for noninvasive therapies to improve the functional abilities of persons blinded by traumatic injury. The BrainPort Vision Pro, an updated hands-free oral electronic vision device, enables perception of visual information using the tongue as a substitute for the eye.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the BrainPort Vision Pro on real-world functional task performance in persons who are profoundly blind (light perception or worse) due to traumatic injury (ocular or cortical). Read More

View Article and Full-Text PDF
September 2018