A novel soft orthotic physiotherapy device for stroke rehabilitation
McConnell, Alistair Campbell
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There is a growing problem in stroke rehabilitation where, due to an increasing number of stroke suﬀerers and the proportion of specialists not increasing to compensate, patients are being relied upon to perform a greater number of exercises in their own home unsupervised and unrecorded. To help solve these issues inpatient rehabilitation, this thesis provides a Soft Robotic Orthotic combined with a Brain Machine Interface (BMI). The Soft Robotic Orthotic is capable of actively assisting a patient through the use of soft robotic actuators to manipulate the ﬁngers to complete extension. Additionally, it is also capable of providing passive assistance where a patient performs their exercises which are recorded and can be displayed as a 3D visualisation on a screen. The soft device was combined with a BMI to create a framework that through the use of motor imagery techniques could command the orthotic to open the hand. The system’s compatibility was examined with diﬀerent headsets. Reliability and performance was analysed to show its eﬃcacy on non-impaired individuals.