Using topic modeling to infer the emotional state of people living with Parkinson's disease.
Authors: Valenti AP, Chita-Tegmark M, Tickle-Degnen L, Bock AW, Scheutz MJ Abstract Individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) often exhibit facial masking (hypomimia), which causes reduced facial expressiveness. This can make it difficult for those who interact with the person to correctly read their emotional state and can lead to problematic social and therapeutic interactions. In this article, we develop a probabilistic model for an assistive device, which can automatically infer the emotional state of a person with PD using the topics that arise during the course of a conversation. We envision that the model c...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 15, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Assistive game controller for artificial intelligence-enhanced telerehabilitation post-stroke.
This article describes the BBG design, hardware, force and movement detection and calibration, and its integration with the therapeutic games. The use of AI in adapting a library of custom therapeutic games is also described. Results of a usability study with healthy individuals and related design modifications are presented, with implications for future trials. PMID: 31180276 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - June 12, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Development and efficacy of an online wheelchair maintenance training program for wheelchair personnel.
Authors: Múnera S, Pearlman J, Toro M, Worobey L, Boninger M, Cooper RA Abstract OBJECTIVES: To develop an online version of the wheelchair maintenance training program (WMTP) and compare learning outcomes from the in-person and online programs using the wheelchair maintenance training questionnaire (WMT-Q), administered before and after the intervention. DESIGN: Iterative development of an online version of the WMTP and implementation. SETTING: Online. PARTICIPANTS: 26 graduate and undergraduate students. INTERVENTION: Web-based training. These results are compared with those from another st...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 8, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Matuto, Magbasa, Maglaro: Learning to read braille through play.
Authors: Lopez RM, Pinder SD, Davies TC Abstract In September 2016, Digital Learning for Development and All Children Reading released a "Grand Challenge for Development" urging researchers to explore the barriers that children with sensory disabilities in the Philippines face with respect to learning how to read. We sought to address one component of this challenge; engagement of persons with visual impairment in learning how to read in braille. The primary goal of this study was to engage in the co-design process to create a device to help young children with visual impairments learn to identify letters...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 8, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

The development of an iPad application for the pain assessment of individuals with developmental disabilities and complex communication needs.
Conclusions: Advancement of this app could mainstream the assessment of pain in youth with DD, and other potential populations. PMID: 31169462 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - June 8, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

An exploratory study analyzing demographics and opinions of assistive technology professionals within the complex rehab technology industry.
Authors: Nix J, Schein RM, Clayback D, Brienza DM, Schmeler MR Abstract This exploratory study investigated the demographics of Assistive Technology Professionals (ATPs) regarding their age, education, certifications, ethnicity, gender, veteran status, disability status, method of financial compensation, company type, and category. In addition, it analyzed opinions on the Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) industry regarding education level and licensure. An 18-question survey developed and disseminated by the University of Pittsburgh in collaboration with the National Coalition for Assistive & Rehab Technology (NC...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 8, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Scoping review of propelling aids for manual wheelchairs.
Authors: Choukou MA, Best KL, Potvin-Gilbert M, Routhier F, Lettre J, Gamache S, Borisoff JF, Gagnon D Abstract Manual wheelchair (MWC) users face a variety of obstacles limiting their participation. Different MWC models and new add-on components intended to improve propulsion may impact users' function and participation, although there is a lack of research on this topic. The aims of this study were to: 1) identify MWC propelling aids (PA) that are reported in the literature; 2) classify the outcomes used to evaluate the influence of PA according to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and H...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 30, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Evaluating common approaches to improve visibility of wheelchair users.
CONCLUSIONS: These results will help clinicians and enable wheelchair users to make informed choices about the best visibility strategies to use. PMID: 31112452 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - May 23, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Smartphone-based systems for physical rehabilitation applications: A systematic review.
Authors: Moral-Munoz JA, Zhang W, Cobo MJ, Herrera-Viedma E, Kaber DB Abstract Tele-(remote) rehabilitation is attracting increased attention from society, including the research community and commercial marketplace with an estimated global market value of $160 billion. Meanwhile, mobile device-based healthcare ("mHealth") has appeared as a revolutionary approach to tele-rehabilitation practice. This paper presents a systematic review of the literature on smartphone-based systems designed for remote facilitation of physical rehabilitation. A total of 74 documents from Web of Science search results were re...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 23, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Technology and TBI: Perspectives of persons with TBI and their family caregivers on technology solutions to address health, wellness, and safety concerns.
Authors: Oyesanya TO, Thompson N, Arulselvam K, Seel RT Abstract Assistive technologies that are tailored to individuals' health, wellness, and safety concerns can help people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and their family caregivers meet their goals. The purpose of this study was to investigate views of technology in the context of managing one's everyday life from the perspectives of persons with TBI and their family caregivers. We conducted 27 in-person, semi-structured interviews with persons with TBI (n = 15) and family caregivers (n = 12) and used conventional content analysis to analyze our data. The maj...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 23, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Orthotists' and physical therapists' perspectives on quality of care indicators for persons with custom ankle-foot orthoses.
CONCLUSIONS: Results provide insight on the topics orthotists and physical therapists regard as priorities for defining healthcare quality for persons using custom ankle-foot orthoses and instruments for data collection. PMID: 31091177 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - May 17, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Comparison of wheelchair securement systems designed for use in large accessible transit vehicles (LATVs).
This study explored the usability of three commercially available wheelchair securement systems in a static laboratory environment: a four-point, forward-facing (4P-FF) securement system, a three-point, forward-facing (3P-FF) securement system, and a semi-automated, rear-facing (SA-RF) securement system. Three groups of mobility device users (manual wheelchair users, power wheelchair users, and scooter users) (n = 36) completed wheelchair securement tasks in a full-scale mock-up of an LATV. For the 19 participants who did not use the occupant restraint system (ORS), perceived usability and securement time were compare...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 10, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Assistive robotic arm: Evaluation of the performance of intelligent algorithms.
Authors: Lebrasseur A, Lettre J, Routhier F, Archambault PS, Campeau-Lecours A Abstract People with upper body disabilities may be limited in their activities of daily living. Robotic arms, such as JACO, are assistive devices that could improve their abilities, independent living, and social participation. However, performing complex tasks with JACO can be time-consuming or tedious. Therefore, some advanced functionalities have been developed to enhance the performance of users. The main objective of this study is to evaluate the performance, in terms of ease of use, task completion time, and participants' percepti...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 10, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Engagement and experience of older people with socially assistive robots in home care.
Authors: Khosla R, Chu MT, Khaksar SMS, Nguyen K, Nishida T Abstract Social isolation is one of the most common consequences of older people with dementia, especially for those who live at their own dwellings alone due to limited access to social activities. Research relating to the use of social robots in aged care has increasing attention to facilitating the support to care services for older people with dementia. Particularly less attention has focused on the applicability of social robots in home care services. This paper aims to study the engagement and robot experience of older people with dementia while inte...
Source: Assistive Technology - May 9, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Coverage of ethics within the artificial intelligence and machine learning academic literature: The case of disabled people.
Authors: Lillywhite A, Wolbring G Abstract Disabled people are often the anticipated users of scientific and technological products and processes advanced and enabled by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). Disabled people are also impacted by societal impacts of AI/ML. Many ethical issues are identified within AI/ML as fields and within individual applications of AI/ML. At the same time, problems have been identified in how ethics discourses engage with disabled people. The aim of our scoping review was to better understand to what extent and how the AI/ML focused academic literature engaged wit...
Source: Assistive Technology - April 19, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Comparison between joystick- and gaze-controlled electric wheelchair during narrow doorway crossing: Feasibility study and movement analysis.
Authors: Letaief M, Rezzoug N, Gorce P Abstract Due to motor deficiencies inducing low force capabilities or tremor, many persons have great difficulties to use joystick-operated wheelchairs. To alleviate such difficulties, alternative interfaces using vocal, gaze, or brain signals are now becoming available. While promising, these systems still need to be evaluated thoroughly. In this framework, the aims of this study are to analyze and evaluate the behavior of 11 able-bodied subjects during a navigation task executed with gaze or joystick-operated electric wheelchair involving a door crossing. An electric wheelch...
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Toward a national system of assistive technology outcomes measurement.
Authors: Lenker JA, Koester HH, Smith RO Abstract For more than two decades the assistive technology outcomes literature has featured repeated calls for clinical research to demonstrate the impact of device recommendations, as well as substantial discussion of tools for measuring AT outcomes. Unfortunately, data are still not routinely collected in most AT service delivery settings, which undermines the field. This paper describes a framework for developing a national cloud-based system of AT outcomes measurement that emerged from structured discussions with clinicians, researchers, and manufacturers. Such a system...
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

A pilot study of children and parents experiences of the use of a new assistive device, the electro suit Mollii.
CONCLUSION: All children reported some impact on their body and self and/or in some activities after the use of the suit. The parents also saw improvements during the trial period. However, the results are inconclusive and a larger study is needed to determine if the suit is useful from a longer perspective and whether it can affect activity and participation in daily activities for children with spasticity. PMID: 30945989 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Stander use for an adolescent with cerebral palsy at GMFCS level V with hip and knee contractures.
CONCLUSION: An adolescent with 40-degree knee and hip flexion contractures may be positioned well in a stander with a specialized contracture system. PROM, bowel function, pain, activity, and participation may improve for some adolescents at GMFCS level V, through use of a stander. PMID: 30945990 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Communication skills among children with spinal muscular atrophy type 1: A parent survey.
Authors: Ball LJ, Chavez S, Perez G, Bharucha-Goebel D, Smart K, Kundrat K, Carruthers L, Brady C, Leach M, Evans S Abstract Spinal muscular atrophy is one of the most common fatal autosomal recessive disorders. Children diagnosed with SMA Type 1 (SMAT1) demonstrate severe oral motor weakness and flaccid dysarthria progressing to complete anarthria. A review of literature illustrates that little has been described regarding augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) use among these children, although communication has a critical impact on quality of life and participation in daily activities. Responses to an ...
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

An evaluation of the use of a lateral wedged insole and a valgus knee brace in combination in subjects with medial compartment knee osteoarthritis (OA).
CONCLUSION: All parameters except stride length and KAM in comparison with first day of wearing interventions improved significantly in the combined, concurrent usage group. The use of a lateral wedge insole and a valgus knee brace in combination can improve the kinetic and kinematic parameters in patients with medial compartment knee OA. PMID: 30945994 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Functional electrical stimulation compared with ankle-foot orthosis in subacute post stroke patients with foot drop: A pilot study.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that FES is at least as effective as traditional AFO and may be more so. PMID: 30945999 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - April 6, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Caregivers', teachers', and assistants' use and learning of partner strategies in communication using high-tech speech-generating devices with children with severe cerebral palsy.
Authors: Tegler H, Pless M, Blom Johansson M, Sonnander K Abstract Communication with speech generating devices (SGDs) with children with severe physical, communicative and cognitive impairments, such as children with cerebral palsy (CP), can be difficult. Use of partner strategies facilitates the communication and instructional approaches such as feedback and role play facilitate communication partners' learning in how to use partner strategies. To describe communication partners' use and learning about partner strategies in SGD-mediated communication with children with severe CP. Questionnaires (n =&nbs...
Source: Assistive Technology - March 8, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Assistive technology: Understanding the needs and experiences of individuals with autism spectrum disorder and/or intellectual disability in Ireland and the UK.
Authors: O'Neill SJ, Smyth S, Smeaton A, O'Connor NE Abstract Assistive technologies (ATs) aimed at improving the life quality of persons with Autism Spectrum Disorder and/or Intellectual Disability (ASD/ID) is an important research area. Few have examined how this population use and experience AT or their vision for future uses of AT. The present study aimed to update and extend previous research and provides insight from caregivers, and other stakeholders (n = 96), living in Ireland and the United Kingdom, on their experiences of assistive technology (AT) for ASD/ID. Caregiver and professional responses...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 24, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Parents act as intermediary users for their children when using assistive technology for cognition in everyday planning: Results from a parental survey.
Authors: Palmqvist L, Danielsson H Abstract Assistive Technology for Cognition (ATC) is employed by children with and without disabilities. However, how the ATC is used in everyday life has not been studied. The current study investigated ATC-usage in everyday planning in three groups: 1) children qualifying for Swedish habilitation centers (ID/ASD), 2) children with disability not qualifying for habilitation service (ADHD), and 3) children with typical development (TD). A parental survey was conducted (n = 192) and answers were analyzed with statistical tests and inductive thematic text analysis. Results...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 24, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Assistive technologies for severe and profound hearing loss: Beyond hearing aids and implants.
Authors: Hermawati S, Pieri K Abstract Assistive technologies (ATs) offer capabilities that were previously inaccessible to individuals with severe and profound hearing loss who have no or limited access to hearing aids and implants. This literature review aims to explore existing ATs and identify what still needs to be done. It is found that there is a lack of focus on the overall objectives of ATs. In addition, several other issues are identified, i.e. only a very small number of ATs developed within a research context have led to commercial devices, and there is a predisposition to use the latest expensive techn...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 19, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Teaching reading to students with learning disabilities: Effects of combined iPad-assisted and peer-assisted instruction on oral reading fluency performance.
Authors: Mize M, Bryant DP, Bryant BR Abstract Students with reading learning disabilities (RLDs) often face struggles in acquiring basic reading abilities, including oral reading fluency. The current study builds on previous work that compared peer-assisted instruction (PAI) to iPad-assisted instruction (IAI) on oral reading fluency, which led to the conclusion that a combined approach may be more effective than either approach alone. A multiple baseline design was used to examine the effectiveness of a combined PAI and IAI approach on oral reading fluency of four 5th grade students with RLD. Overall, there were m...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 16, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Dynamic changes in seating pressure gradient in wheelchair users with spinal cord injury.
Authors: Lung CW, Yang TD, Liau BY, Cheung WC, Jain S, Jan YK Abstract Pressure ulcer interventions are commonly assessed with measures of seating interface pressure, such as peak pressure gradients (PPGs). Decreases in PPG magnitudes may reduce pressure ulcer risk by decreasing tissue deformation and increasing tissue perfusion of at-risk weight-bearing tissues. Changes in PPG directions, which have previously been overlooked in the seating pressure literature, may provide a transient increase in blood flow to at-risk tissues, even if the PPG magnitude and location remain the same. The purpose of this study was to...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 16, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Exploration of head-related transfer function and environmental sounds as a means to improve auditory scanning for children requiring augmentative and alternative communication.
Authors: McCarthy JW, DiGiovanni JJ, Ries DT, Boster JB, Riffle TL Abstract Many individuals who require augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) cannot directly select items on computer-based displays. Individuals who also have visual impairments may need to rely on sequential announcement of array choices in auditory scanning. The method is challenging and there is a lack of research to improve this access method. Two potential solutions were tested: using environmental sounds to represent items (e.g., the sound of a clock ticking for a clock) and providing spatial cues regarding the organization of items...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 12, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Virtual reality-based wheelchair simulators: A scoping review.
Authors: Arlati S, Colombo V, Ferrigno G, Sacchetti R, Sacco M Abstract Sense of presence (SoP) has recently emerged as one of the key elements promoting the effectiveness of virtual reality-based training programs. In the context of wheelchair simulators (WSs), the effectiveness of the simulation has been sought using different perception and interaction devices, providing the end-users with different levels of SoP. We performed a scoping review searching scientific and grey literature databases with the aim of assessing the extent of published research dealing with SoP and effectiveness of WSs. Sixty-two articles...
Source: Assistive Technology - January 9, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

The effect of orthotic interventions on balance performance in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis: A systematic literature review.
CONCLUSION: There is a requirement to follow up the use and wear of orthoses and also studies with high quality in subjects with AIS. PMID: 30601092 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - January 4, 2019 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Increasing the autonomy of deafblind individuals through direct access to content broadcasted on digital terrestrial television.
Authors: García-Crespo A, Montes-Chunga M, Matheus-Chacin CA, Garcia-Encabo I Abstract Digital terrestrial television currently incorporates accessibility elements for the deaf (closed captions, CCs) and for the blind (audio description and audio navigation), however the deafblind population has particular accessibility needs that to date have not been met. This work presents a technical aid (a mobile application called GoAll) developed to increase the autonomy of deafblind individuals, allowing direct access to content broadcast on digital TV through the reading of CCs either with a mobile device or a Brail...
Source: Assistive Technology - December 30, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Mobility analysis of amputees (MAAT 3): Matching individuals based on comorbid health reveals improved function for above-knee prosthesis users with microprocessor knee technology.
The objective of this cross-sectional observational study was to determine whether the use of a microprocessor knee for individuals with an above-the-knee amputation results in improved functional mobility compared to their peers of matched comorbid-health with a non-microprocessor knee, and to inform how this compares to the mobility observed in below-knee prosthesis users. A sample of 450 individuals with lower limb amputation were divided into three groups (n = 150 each). The groups included: nonmicroprocessor knee users (NMPK, age: 57.6 ± 17.2 years), microprocessor knee users (MPK, age:...
Source: Assistive Technology - December 30, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Effects of Assistive Home Technology on quality of life and falls of people with dementia and job satisfaction of caregivers; results from a pilot randomized controlled trial.
CONCLUSION: Positive effects were found on aspects of QoL and fall incidents in the bathroom. The lower caregiver appreciation of work circumstances in the AHT group confirms the importance of intensive support and guidance of personnel during the implementation of AHT. PMID: 30592439 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - December 30, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

A novel instrumented walker for individualized visual cue setting for gait training in patients with Parkinson's disease.
This study proposes a convenient instrumented wheel walker that provides gap adjustable visual cues and selectable projection modes onto the ground with and without motion relative to the user. Ten subjects with Parkinson's disease were recruited, and the efficacy of the proposed device for their gait training was assessed. We demonstrated the applicability of our device to address personalized demands in gait guidance. With a personalized setting for patients with Parkinson's disease, a significantly lengthened stride length may be achieved. PMID: 30592441 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - December 30, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Identifying features of apps to support using evidence-based language intervention with children.
This study investigated the features of apps that speech-language pathologists (SLPs) deem to be beneficial for language intervention with children. The study employed an explanatory, sequential mixed-method approach. A self-developed online survey was distributed to SLPs (n = 338) who use apps. This was followed by a semi-structured interview with some participants (n = 16) in order to obtain further insights from the survey. The findings indicated that SLPs view apps as an engaging and motivating tool for therapy to facilitate their intervention goals. Specific content and design features of apps may support ef...
Source: Assistive Technology - December 22, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

The relationship between torso inclination and the shearing force of the buttocks while seated in a wheelchair: Preliminary research in non-disabled individuals.
Authors: Shirogane S, Toyama S, Takashima A, Tanaka T Abstract The shearing force acting upon the contacting surface of the buttocks while seated in a wheelchair has been linked to the development of pressure ulcers. However, the actual causative factors have not been examined in detail. In an attempt to clarify the nature of this problem, we developed a specific measurement system. In preparation for future clinical applications, we conducted preliminary testing in non-disabled individuals. As a result, we were able to discover a number of issues related to this system and our measurement methods. Although we only...
Source: Assistive Technology - December 5, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

A screening protocol incorporating brain-computer interface feature matching considerations for augmentative and alternative communication.
CONCLUSION: The BCI screener captures factors likely relevant for BCI, which has value for guiding person-centered BCI assessment across different devices to help inform BCI trials. PMID: 30380372 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] (Source: Assistive Technology)
Source: Assistive Technology - November 2, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Development of high performance parasport prosthetic limbs: A proposed framework and case study.
Authors: Dyer B Abstract Sport with a disability has progressed from undertaking physical activity for recreation to one of a high performance environment at competitions such as the Paralympic Games. There is currently limited information and guidance to help inform stakeholders as to how to develop the high performance technology of elite athletes who possess limb absence. In this manuscript, a conceptual framework for high performance prosthetic limb creation is presented. This utilises a synthesis between contemporary product design theory and a review of existing case studies. This proposed framework is then a...
Source: Assistive Technology - October 31, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Feasibility study by a single-blind randomized controlled trial of self-management of mobility with a gait-speed feedback device by older persons at risk for falling.
Authors: Schoon Y, Bongers KTJ, Olde Rikkert MGM Abstract This single-blind randomized pilot study explored feasibility and safety of a self-management fall prevention program, hypothesizing that older persons can comply with this program, while it does not result in more (injurious) falls, or a decrease in mental wellbeing as an adverse effect of being focused on falls prevention. Eighty-six persons, community-dwelling or home for the aged (mean age 80.3 years [SD: 6.3], 56 women (65.1%)) participated. The intervention group measured their gait speed by using the Mobility Feedback Device (MFD) weekly for 6&nb...
Source: Assistive Technology - October 31, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Physiological parameters depending on two different types of manual wheelchair propulsion.
Authors: Marszałek J, Kosmol A, Mróz A, Wiszomirska I, Fiok K, Molik B Abstract OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to compare aerobic parameters in the multistage field test (MFT) in hand rim wheelchair propulsion and lever wheelchair propulsion. METHODS: Twenty-one men performed MFT using two different types of propulsion, i.e., lever and hand rim wheelchair propulsion. The covered distance and physiological variables (oxygen uptake (VO2), minute ventilation (VE), carbon dioxide output (VCO2), respiratory coefficient (RQ), and heart rate (HR)) were observed. Physiological variables were measured ...
Source: Assistive Technology - October 19, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Regulating hearing aid compatibility of cell phones: results from a national survey.
Authors: Jones ML, Morris JT, Mueller JL, Lippincott B, Sweatman WM Abstract Accessibility of telecommunication technologies by people who are deaf or hard of hearing has been a critical issue since the invention of the telephone. As both telephone and hearing-aid technologies have evolved, finding compatible solutions has been an ongoing challenge. This paper uses the findings of a longitudinal study to examine the impact of Federal hearing-aid compatibility (HAC) regulations in resolving this problem. The study ran concurrently with the phase-in of Federal Communications Commission regulations requiring that mobi...
Source: Assistive Technology - October 19, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Developing a bilingual mobile dictionary for Indian Sign Language and gathering users experience with SignDict.
This article discusses the development of a bilingual mobile sign language dictionary which has features for converting camera captured text into sign language and translating simple sentences from a spoken language into their corresponding signs. Feedback from 2900 users spread across India who have installed our mobile application indicates that, users prefer mobile application for learning ISL. Comparing the existing printed sign language dictionaries and other mobile based ISL dictionaries with the mobile application we have developed, 45 stakeholders of a deaf school assessed that its features like easy availability, ...
Source: Assistive Technology - September 9, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Testing of an assistive robot system for haptic exploration of objects.
CONCLUSION: Participants performed a previously unidentified EP, "tapping", in the Tech condition. Enclosure was not possible with the robot end effector, but tapping afforded the required perceptual information. Adults' perceptual comparisons were always accurate and they predominantly performed the optimum EP in both conditions. Even when children performed the optimum EP with the system, their answers were less accurate than with manual exploration. Most gave the correct answer, except for hardness, which was likely due to mechanical flexibility in the robotic system. PMID: 30148684 [PubMed - as supplied b...
Source: Assistive Technology - August 28, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

ViEW: a wheelchair simulator for driving analysis.
Authors: Morère Y, Bourhis G, Cosnuau K, Guilmois G, Rumilly E, Blangy E Abstract The powered wheelchair (PW) has become an essential mobility assistive technology for people with motor disabilities. A critical step involved in maximizing the end-user experience is evaluating individual functional abilities to identify driving difficulties PW users experience during their daily activities. There are certain limitations, however, associated with on-road driving assessments, such as the practical concern of safety. And while extracting quantitative parameters such as joystick control or trajectory tracking fro...
Source: Assistive Technology - August 10, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

The short term influence of rear wheel axle position and training on manual wheelchair propulsion technique in novice able bodied participants during steady state treadmill propulsion, a pilot study.
Authors: Rice I, Jayaraman C, Pohlig RT Abstract PURPOSE: To examine if wheelchair fit influenced the effectiveness of video based propulsion technique training in able bodied participants. METHOD: A cross sectional design was implemented to determine if a sample of able bodied participants (n = 21) randomized into a group receiving either an optimally configured wheelchair (OCW) (n = 11) or a non-optimally configured wheelchair (NOCW) (n = 10) showed differences in propulsion technique before and after training. Outcome variables collected during steady state treadmill propulsion ...
Source: Assistive Technology - August 4, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Clinical features of electric powered indoor/outdoor wheelchair users with spinal cord injuries: a cross-sectional study.
This article aims to describe the characteristics of those with a primary diagnosis of spinal cord injury (SCI) attending a specialist wheelchair service providing electric powered indoor/outdoor chairs (EPIOCs). This cross-sectional study, with retrospective review of electronic and case note records, explores the complexities of additional clinical features associated with SCI and disability influencing prescription. Data were extracted under three themes; demographics, diagnostic/clinical information and wheelchair factors. There were 57 participants (35 men, 22 women) (mean age 53.51 ± 11.93, range 29-...
Source: Assistive Technology - July 25, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Developing a process for assessing equivalency of wheelchair cushion pressure redistribution performance.
The objective of this research was to develop an approach to assess the equivalency of cushions with respect to their pressure redistribution performance. Two instrumented compliant buttock models, differing in form, were used in the evaluation. Stress and strain parameters were used to characterize load-bearing performance. A cohort of 8 wheelchair cushions was compared to a standard reference material, HR45 foam. Each cushion was measured using both models under two loading conditions. The use of compliant buttock models that are capable of measuring both stress and strain parameters offer greater capability in measuring...
Source: Assistive Technology - July 11, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

rehabilitation engineers, technologists, and technicians: vital members of the assistive technology team.
Authors: DiGiovine CP, Donahue M, Bahr P, Bresler M, Klaesner J, Pagadala R, Burkhardt B, Grott R Abstract The purpose of this white paper is to describe the rehabilitation engineering professions, specifically rehabilitation engineers, rehabilitation technologists/assistive technologists, and rehabilitation technicians. An ad-hoc committee was convened by the Rehabilitation Engineering and Technologists (RE&T) Professional Standards Group (PSG) at the 2013 annual meeting, RESNA Conference in Seattle, Washington. The ad-hoc committee consists of rehabilitation engineering professionals who have experience worki...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 29, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research

Personalized design of ankle-foot prosthesis based on computer modeling of amputee locomotion.
This study proposes a computer modeling approach to find the optimal damping coefficients of the viscoelastic ankle-foot prostheses for each specific amputee. A two-dimensional locomotion model was developed for a transtibial amputee and personalized using his body measures and the reference gait pattern of an equivalent able-bodied subject. By employing the forward dynamic simulation, the amputee's locomotion was synthesized for different prosthetic settings to find the optimal damping coefficients, based on a kinematics and a total work cost function. Results indicated a good agreement between the model predictions and t...
Source: Assistive Technology - June 28, 2018 Category: Rehabilitation Tags: Assist Technol Source Type: research