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Assessment-driven selection and adaptation of exercise difficulty in robot-assisted therapy: a pilot study with a hand rehabilitation robot.

Metzger JC, Lambercy O, Califfi A, Dinacci D, Petrillo C, Rossi P, Conti FM, Gassert R - J Neuroeng Rehabil (2014)

Bottom Line: Patients showed reduction in both motor and sensory impairments compared to baseline as measured by clinical and robotic assessments.The progress in difficulty levels correlated with improvements in a clinical impairment scale (Fugl-Meyer Assessment) (r s = 0.70), suggesting that the proposed therapy was effective at reducing sensorimotor impairment.This results in optimal challenge and engagement of the patient, may facilitate sensorimotor recovery after neurological injury, and has implications for unsupervised robot-assisted therapy in the clinic and home environment.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Rehabilitation Engineering Laboratory, ETH Zurich, Leonhardstrasse 27, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland. gassertr@ethz.ch.

ABSTRACT

Background: Selecting and maintaining an engaging and challenging training difficulty level in robot-assisted stroke rehabilitation remains an open challenge. Despite the ability of robotic systems to provide objective and accurate measures of function and performance, the selection and adaptation of exercise difficulty levels is typically left to the experience of the supervising therapist.

Methods: We introduce a patient-tailored and adaptive robot-assisted therapy concept to optimally challenge patients from the very first session and throughout therapy progress. The concept is evaluated within a four-week pilot study in six subacute stroke patients performing robot-assisted rehabilitation of hand function. Robotic assessments of both motor and sensory impairments of hand function conducted prior to the therapy are used to adjust exercise parameters and customize difficulty levels. During therapy progression, an automated routine adapts difficulty levels from session to session to maintain patients' performance around a target level of 70%, to optimally balance motivation and challenge.

Results: Robotic assessments suggested large differences in patients' sensorimotor abilities that are not captured by clinical assessments. Exercise customization based on these assessments resulted in an average initial exercise performance around 70% (62% ± 20%, mean ± std), which was maintained throughout the course of the therapy (64% ± 21%). Patients showed reduction in both motor and sensory impairments compared to baseline as measured by clinical and robotic assessments. The progress in difficulty levels correlated with improvements in a clinical impairment scale (Fugl-Meyer Assessment) (r s = 0.70), suggesting that the proposed therapy was effective at reducing sensorimotor impairment.

Conclusions: Initial robotic assessments combined with progressive difficulty adaptation have the potential to automatically tailor robot-assisted rehabilitation to the individual patient. This results in optimal challenge and engagement of the patient, may facilitate sensorimotor recovery after neurological injury, and has implications for unsupervised robot-assisted therapy in the clinic and home environment.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT02096445.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Detailed description of exercisesE1-E7. The heuristically defined exercise parameters used to customize the difficulty levels are shown within curly brackets in the “Exercise parameters” column. Refer to the flowchart in Figure 3 for a description of the patient-tailored and adaptive therapy concept.
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Fig2: Detailed description of exercisesE1-E7. The heuristically defined exercise parameters used to customize the difficulty levels are shown within curly brackets in the “Exercise parameters” column. Refer to the flowchart in Figure 3 for a description of the patient-tailored and adaptive therapy concept.

Mentions: Each therapy session with the robot was composed of a subset of three exercises lasting up to 15 minutes each and conducted in a randomized order. The three exercises trained in each session were selected among seven neurocognitive exercises, E1- E7, implemented on the robot and focusing on important aspects of hand sensorimotor function (i.e. proprioception, haptic perception, sensorimotor memory and sensorimotor coordination; refer to Section on Neurocognitive robot-assisted rehabilitation and Figure 2). An exercise plan for all therapy sessions, common to all participants, was defined prior to the study start in order to ensure that each exercise was regularly trained.Figure 2


Assessment-driven selection and adaptation of exercise difficulty in robot-assisted therapy: a pilot study with a hand rehabilitation robot.

Metzger JC, Lambercy O, Califfi A, Dinacci D, Petrillo C, Rossi P, Conti FM, Gassert R - J Neuroeng Rehabil (2014)

Detailed description of exercisesE1-E7. The heuristically defined exercise parameters used to customize the difficulty levels are shown within curly brackets in the “Exercise parameters” column. Refer to the flowchart in Figure 3 for a description of the patient-tailored and adaptive therapy concept.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4273449&req=5

Fig2: Detailed description of exercisesE1-E7. The heuristically defined exercise parameters used to customize the difficulty levels are shown within curly brackets in the “Exercise parameters” column. Refer to the flowchart in Figure 3 for a description of the patient-tailored and adaptive therapy concept.
Mentions: Each therapy session with the robot was composed of a subset of three exercises lasting up to 15 minutes each and conducted in a randomized order. The three exercises trained in each session were selected among seven neurocognitive exercises, E1- E7, implemented on the robot and focusing on important aspects of hand sensorimotor function (i.e. proprioception, haptic perception, sensorimotor memory and sensorimotor coordination; refer to Section on Neurocognitive robot-assisted rehabilitation and Figure 2). An exercise plan for all therapy sessions, common to all participants, was defined prior to the study start in order to ensure that each exercise was regularly trained.Figure 2

Bottom Line: Patients showed reduction in both motor and sensory impairments compared to baseline as measured by clinical and robotic assessments.The progress in difficulty levels correlated with improvements in a clinical impairment scale (Fugl-Meyer Assessment) (r s = 0.70), suggesting that the proposed therapy was effective at reducing sensorimotor impairment.This results in optimal challenge and engagement of the patient, may facilitate sensorimotor recovery after neurological injury, and has implications for unsupervised robot-assisted therapy in the clinic and home environment.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Rehabilitation Engineering Laboratory, ETH Zurich, Leonhardstrasse 27, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland. gassertr@ethz.ch.

ABSTRACT

Background: Selecting and maintaining an engaging and challenging training difficulty level in robot-assisted stroke rehabilitation remains an open challenge. Despite the ability of robotic systems to provide objective and accurate measures of function and performance, the selection and adaptation of exercise difficulty levels is typically left to the experience of the supervising therapist.

Methods: We introduce a patient-tailored and adaptive robot-assisted therapy concept to optimally challenge patients from the very first session and throughout therapy progress. The concept is evaluated within a four-week pilot study in six subacute stroke patients performing robot-assisted rehabilitation of hand function. Robotic assessments of both motor and sensory impairments of hand function conducted prior to the therapy are used to adjust exercise parameters and customize difficulty levels. During therapy progression, an automated routine adapts difficulty levels from session to session to maintain patients' performance around a target level of 70%, to optimally balance motivation and challenge.

Results: Robotic assessments suggested large differences in patients' sensorimotor abilities that are not captured by clinical assessments. Exercise customization based on these assessments resulted in an average initial exercise performance around 70% (62% ± 20%, mean ± std), which was maintained throughout the course of the therapy (64% ± 21%). Patients showed reduction in both motor and sensory impairments compared to baseline as measured by clinical and robotic assessments. The progress in difficulty levels correlated with improvements in a clinical impairment scale (Fugl-Meyer Assessment) (r s = 0.70), suggesting that the proposed therapy was effective at reducing sensorimotor impairment.

Conclusions: Initial robotic assessments combined with progressive difficulty adaptation have the potential to automatically tailor robot-assisted rehabilitation to the individual patient. This results in optimal challenge and engagement of the patient, may facilitate sensorimotor recovery after neurological injury, and has implications for unsupervised robot-assisted therapy in the clinic and home environment.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT02096445.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus