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A sensory feedback system utilizing cutaneous electrical stimulation for stroke patients with sensory loss

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6 Author(s)
Kita, K. ; Dept. of Motor Control & Rehabilitation, ATR Comput. Neurosci. Labs., Kyoto, Japan ; Takeda, K. ; Osu, R. ; Ushiba, J.
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Sensory disturbance is very common following stroke and may exacerbate a patient's functional impairment, even if the patient has good motor function. For instance, patients with sensory disturbances will often grip an object with excessive or underestimated pinch pressure, because they do not receive the appropriate sensory feedback and must rely only on visual feedback. In this study, we developed a sensory feedback system that used cutaneous electrical stimulation for patients with sensory loss. In the system, electrical stimulation is modulated by the strength of pinch pressure and the patients are able to identify their fingertip pinch pressure. To evaluate the efficacy of the system, a clinical case study was conducted in a stroke patient with severe sensory loss. The fluctuation in force control during grasping was gradually decreased as the training progressed and the patient was able to maintain a stable pinch pressure during grasping even without the system following 2 months of intervention. We conclude that the system described in this study may be a useful contribution towards the rehabilitation of patients with sensory loss.

Published in:

Rehabilitation Robotics (ICORR), 2011 IEEE International Conference on

Date of Conference:

June 29 2011-July 1 2011