Advances in upper limb stroke rehabilitation: a technology push


Loureiro, R., Harwin, W., Nagai, K. and Johnson, M. 2011. Advances in upper limb stroke rehabilitation: a technology push. Medical & Biological Engineering & Computing. 49 (10), pp. 1103-1118.
TitleAdvances in upper limb stroke rehabilitation: a technology push
AuthorsLoureiro, R., Harwin, W., Nagai, K. and Johnson, M.

Strokes affect thousands of people worldwide leaving sufferers with severe disabilities affecting their daily activities. In recent years new rehabilitation techniques have emerged such as constraint-induced therapy, biofeedback therapy, and robot-aided therapy. In particular, robotic techniques allow precise recording of movements and application of forces to the affected limb, making it a valuable tool for motor rehabilitation. In addition, robot-aided therapy can use visual cues conveyed on a computer screen to convert repetitive movement practice into an engaging task such as a game. Visual cues can also be used to control the information sent to the patient about exercise performance and to potentially address psychosomatic variables influencing therapy. This paper overviews the current state-of-the-art on upper limb robot-mediated therapy with a focal point on the technical requirements of robotic therapy devices leading to the development of upper limb rehabilitation techniques that facilitate reach-to-touch, fine motor control, whole-arm movements and promote rehabilitation beyond hospital stay. The reviewed literature suggest that while there is evidence supporting the use of this technology to reduce functional impairment, besides the technological push, the challenge ahead lies on provision of effective assessment of outcome and modalities that have a stronger impact transferring functional gains into functional independence.

KeywordsStroke, Neurorehabilitation, Sensorimotor control, Upper limb, Rehabilitation robotics
JournalMedical & Biological Engineering & Computing
Publication dates
PrintOct 2011
Publication process dates
Deposited12 Apr 2012
Output statusPublished
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
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