Use of the Robot Assisted Gait Therapy in Rehabilitation of Patients With Stroke and Spinal Cord InjuryBy Sale, P.; Franceschini, M.; Waldner, A.; Hesse, S.; European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, Volume 48, Number 1, pages 111-121
Publication Date: March 2012
Article provides an overview of the use of robotic devices in gait restoration of patients with stroke and spinal cord injury (SCI). Robot assisted gait therapy is defined as the use of a robot exoskeleton device or end–effector device to help the patient with stroke or SCI retrain motor coordination by performing well focused and carefully directed repetitive practice. As an assistive device, the exoskeleton is also an external structural mechanism with joints and links corresponding to those of the human body. These robots use joint trajectories of the entire gait cycle and offer a more or less uniform stiff control along this trajectory. In this field, the powered exoskeleton ReWalk was developed to provide an alternative mobility solution to the wheelchair and rehabilitation treatment for individuals with severe walking impairments, enabling them to stand, walk, and ascend and descend stairs. The end-effector based robot is a device with footplates placed on a double crank and rocker gear system. Examples of these devices include the Gait Trainer, the HapticWalker, and the G-EO System. Alternatives to powered exoskeletons are devices that use movable footplates to which the patient’s feet are attached, such as the LokoHelp, which attaches to a motorized treadmill. All devices include some form of body weight support. A review of various articles examined on the topic of robot assisted gait therapy showed that while this therapy provides versatile control approaches as a framework to the design of optimal rehabilitation interventions, the high cost of robot devices raises the question of efficiency in comparison with other training strategies.
Published by: Minerva Medica (Website:http://www.minervamedica.it/)
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