Skip to Main Content
A brain-computer interface (BCI) based on steady-state visual-evoked potentials (SSVEPs) is combined with a functional electrical stimulation (FES) system to allow the user to control stimulation settings and parameters. The system requires four flickering lights of distinct frequencies that are used to form a menu-based interface, enabling the user to interact with the FES system. The approach was evaluated in 12 neurologically intact subjects to change the parameters and operating mode of an abdominal stimulation system for respiratory assistance. No major influence of the FES on the raw EEG signal could be observed. In tests with a self-paced task, a mean accuracy of more than 90% was achieved, with detection times of approximately 7.7 s and an average information transfer rate of 12.5 bits/min. There was no significant dependency of the accuracy or time of detection on the FES stimulation intensity. The results indicate that the system could be used to control FES-based neuroprostheses with a high degree of accuracy and robustness.