[Conference Paper] Haptic based Gait Rehabilitation System for Stroke Patients – Full Text PDF

Abstract
Among most existing gait rehabilitation robots, it
is difficult to find adequate devices for gait rehabilitation of
chronic stroke patients who can already stand and move but still
need to rehabilitate the affected lower limb through simple,
compact, and easy-to use devices. This paper presents a novel
haptic based gait rehabilitation system (HGRS) which has the
potential to provide over-ground gait training regimens for
post-stroke ambulatory subjects. It consists of a portable cane
for kinesthetic sensing and a wearable vibrotactor array for
tactile biofeedback. Contact of user with the handle provides
light grip force, it serves the purpose of balance assurance and
increased muscle activity through light touch concept and
vibrotactors contribute in enhancing the gait modification
through afferent signal of vibration. Walking trials conducted
with stroke patients indicate increased muscle activation and
balance, and improved temporal symmetry with use of HGRS.
HGRS is capable of assisting physical therapists in training
individuals with stroke suffering from gait abnormalities. In
addition, it is easy to use and low-cost which makes it reachable
to a vast domain of subjects suffering from gait abnormalities.

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