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Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA

Stephen Sprigle, Steven Pubillones
For wheelchair users who are at risk for developing pressure ulcers, cushion prescription seeks to address tissue integrity. Because many designs of wheelchair cushions exist, a need exists to estimate their performance in supporting the body. 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...
July 9, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Carmen P DiGiovine, Meghan Donahue, Patricia Bahr, Mark Bresler, Joseph Klaesner, Raj Pagadala, Brian Burkhardt, Ray Grott
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 working in a variety of environments, and with a multitude of professionals...
June 28, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Tzafit Tirkel, Yael Edan, Natalia Khvorostyanov, Simona Bar-Haim
This paper presents the overall design of a prototype home-based system aimed to reduce sedentary behavior of older adults. Quantitative performance indicators were developed to measure the sedentary behavior and daily activities of an older adult. The sedentary behavior is monitored by identifying individual positions (standing, sitting, and lying) within the field of view of a Microsoft Kinect sensor, using a custom designed algorithm. The physical activity of the older adult when outside the field of view of the Microsoft Kinect sensor, is monitored by counting the number of steps using a Fitbit Charge HR watch, which the older adult is equipped with...
June 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
A Steinert, C Eicher, M Haesner, E Steinhagen-Thiessen
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
June 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Mohammad Gharini, Majid Mohammadi Moghaddam, Farzam Farahmand
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...
June 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Emily J Steel
Reforms to Australia's disability and rehabilitation sectors have espoused the potential of assistive technology as an enabler. As new insurance systems are being developed it is timely to examine the structure of existing systems. This exploratory study examined the policies guiding assistive technology provision in the motor accident insurance sector of one Australian state. METHODS: Policy documents were analyzed iteratively with set of qualitative questions to understand the intent and interpretation of policies guiding assistive technology provision...
June 8, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Laura Sanches Rocha, Bonita Sawatzky, W Ben Mortenson
New geared wheelchair wheels have been developed allowing the user to pull backwards on the rims to move forward. Theoretically, this utilizes larger muscle groups compared to conventional propulsion preventing repetitive stress injuries. This study compared the gross mechanical efficiency (GME), perceived effort and energy expenditure of propelling the wheelchair using two types of these geared wheels and standard forward propulsion wheels. A within participants repeated measures design was used. Participants' energy expenditure and perceived exertion were measured...
May 17, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Kuang-Chin Tai
Blind people adopt their remaining intact senses to perceive the world for tasks such as determining the water level in a bowl. Pouring water into a bowl generates water sounds and echoes reflected in the bowl. This research develops a bowl with increased echo (called an echo bowl), and analyzes the accuracy of water levels perceived by visually impaired people using a container or a kettle to pour water into a common bowl or an echo bowl. The analysis of factors of pouring and filled equipment indicates that the container has a significantly lower water level error than the kettle when pouring water...
May 9, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Ikram Asghar, Shuang Cang, Hongnian Yu
This study explores important factors of assistive technology (AT) and evaluates their relative impact on AT effectiveness and retention. Questionnaire based survey is used for data collection from 327 people with dementia (PWD). This empirical study uses statistical techniques including exploratory factor analysis for factor identification, linear regression for impact study, Kruskal Wallis H and Mann Whitney U tests for the statistical significant study in terms of demographic and characteristics. The exploratory factor analysis results into 11 factors: operational support, physical support, psychological support, social support, cultural match, reduced external help, affordability, travel help, compatibility, effectiveness and retention...
April 27, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
M Tofani, C Candeloro, M Sabbadini, L Lucibello, M Figura, G Fabbrini, G Galeoto, E Castelli
The importance of adaptive seating system on body structure and function is widely accepted, but its impact on psychosocial aspects needs more consideration by health professionals. This article describes the Italian validation of the Psychosocial Impact of Assistive Device Scale (IT-PIADS) for non-ambulant people with neuromotor disorders. Once agreement has been given by the original authors, the scale was translated and adapted to the Italian culture. The IT-PIADS was administered to different wheelchairs users with heterogeneous diagnosis...
April 25, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Gustav Jarl, Lars-Olov Lundqvist
The medical and social models of disability are based on a dichotomy that categorizes people as able-bodied or disabled. In contrast, the biopsychosocial model, which forms the basis for the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), suggests a universalistic perspective on human functioning, encompassing all human beings. In this article we argue that the artificial separation of function-enhancing technology into assistive technology (AT) and mainstream technology might be one of the barriers to a universalistic view of human functioning...
April 20, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Nahid Tafti, Masoud Karimlou, Mohammad Ali Mardani, Amir Salar Jafarpisheh, Gholam Reza Aminian, Reza Safari
The objectives of current study were to a) assess similarities and relationships between anatomical landmark-based angles and distances of lower limbs in unilateral transtibial amputees and b) develop and evaluate a new anatomically based static prosthetic alignment method. First sub-study assessed the anthropometrical differences and relationships between the lower limbs in the photographs taken from amputees. Data were analysed via paired t-test and regression analysis. Results show no significant differences in frontal and transverse planes...
April 20, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
M Berthelette, D D Mann, J Ripat, C M Glazebrook
Wheelchair users who live in cold climates are faced with daily difficulties related to personal independence and societal inclusion, as their assistive devices are unable to overcome the physical barriers created by snow and ice. The purpose of the research was to evaluate four commercially available casters to determine which caster performed best on snow-covered surfaces. Performance measures included: travel time, force transfer through the palms of the hands, number of propulsive movements, static resistance to movement, kinetic resistance to movement, and caster penetration into the packed snow...
April 18, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Kathleen B Aspiranti, Karen H Larwin, Benjamin P Schade
Since the introduction of iPads in 2010, educators have been working to effectively incorporate this technology as a supplement to curriculum and a tool to increase student engagement and student achievement. The current investigation examines the effectiveness of iPad applications in supporting the instruction of students identified on the autism spectrum. Specifically, this investigation provides a meta-analysis of available research that examines the use of iPad technology and its impact on learning outcomes for students with autism...
April 10, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Bob Radder, Gerdienke B Prange-Lasonder, Anke I R Kottink, Johnny Holmberg, Kristin Sletta, Manon Van Dijk, Thomas Meyer, Jaap H Buurke, Johan S Rietman
Reduced grip strength, resulting in difficulties in performing daily activities, is a common problem in the population of older adults. Newly developed soft-robotic devices have the potential to support older adults with reduced grip in daily activities. The objective of this study was to evaluate the direct, assistive effect of grip support from the wearable, soft-robotic ironHand glove. In total, 65 older adults with self-reported decline of hand function resulting from various disorders participated in this cross-sectional study...
March 30, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Patrick Emeka Okonji, Olatokunbo Christopher Okiki, Darlington Ogwezzy
This study investigated perceived relevance of and difficulties in access to day-to-day online activities among visually impaired computer users who used screen readers. The 98 participants in the study were grouped into visually impaired adults (aged 20-59, n = 60) and visually impaired older adults (aged 60 and over, n = 38). Data were collected in structured interview questionnaires with Likert scales exploring ratings of perceived importance and difficulty of access to 11 online platforms of various internet activities...
March 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Mohammad Khodadadi, Mina Arab Baniasad, Mokhtar Arazpour, Farzam Farahmand, Hassan Zohoor
The high prevalence of shoulder pain in using walkers in patients who have spinal cord injury (SCI). Also, the limited options available to economically measure grip forces in walkers, which drove the need to create one. This article describes a method to obtain upper-extremities' forces and moments in a person with SCI by designing an appropriate instrumented walker. First, since the commercial multidirectional loadcells are too expensive, custom loadcells are fabricated. Ultimately, a complete gait analysis by means of VICON motion analysis and using inverse dynamic method has been held to measure upper-extremities' efforts...
February 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Erin Perfect, Atul Jaiswal, T Claire Davies
The purpose of this study is to systematically review published evidence regarding the development, use, and effectiveness of assistive devices and technol ogies that enable internet access for individuals who are deafblind. Eight electronic research databases (CINAHL, Embase, Engineering Village MEDLINE, PsycINFO, PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Web of Science) and three clinical trials registries (ISRCTN Registry, WHO ICTRP, and were searched. Seven articles met the inclusion criteria for this systematic review...
February 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Sebastian Fudickar, Jörn Kiselev, Thomas Frenken, Sandra Wegel, Slavica Dimitrowska, Elisabeth Steinhagen-Thiessen, Andreas Hein
To initiate appropriate interventions and avoid physical decline, comprehensive measurements are needed to detect functional changes in elderly people at the earliest possible stage. The established Timed Up&Go (TUG) test takes little time and, due to its standardized and easy procedure, can be conducted by elderly people in their own homes without clinical guidance. Therefore, cheap light barriers (LBs) and force sensors (FSs) are well suited ambient sensors that could easily be attached to existing (arm)chairs to measure and report TUG times in order to identify functional decline...
February 26, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Hauke Horstmann, Eva Krost, Bastian Welke, Arno Kerling, Alexander Hanke, Eike Jakubowitz, Thomas Sanjay Weber-Spickschen
The goals of knee rehabilitation are to improve range of motion and muscle status. The aim of the study was to investigate accuracy and reproducibility of a newly designed knee-training device (KT) under standardized laboratory conditions. Two application-based software programs, one to measure maximum force and the other intended to improve users' coordination were developed to be used on a tablet during exercises, wirelessly connected to KT placed under the popliteal fossa. KT was loaded for 20 intervals of 15 seconds (s) ranging between 0-350 Newton (N) each...
February 21, 2018: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
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