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Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA

Åsa Larsson Ranada, Helene Lidström
The service delivery process (SDP) of assistive technology device (ATD) is attracting interest, as the provision of ATD is critical for the independence and participation in society of individuals with disabilities. The purpose of the current study was to investigate what impact the SDP has on satisfaction with ATDs in individuals with disabilities in relation to everyday activities. A systematic literature review was conducted, which resulted in 53 articles included. The results showed that there are factors in almost all the different steps of the SDP that affect the satisfaction with of the devices, which can lead to underutilization and abandonment of ATDs...
September 11, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Hung-Yue Chang, Ching-Hsing Luo, Tun-Shin Lo, Hsiao-Chuan Chen, Kuo-You Huang, Wen-Huei Liao, Mao-Chang Su, Shu-Yu Liu, Nan-Mai Wang
This study investigated whether a self-designed assistive listening device (ALD) that incorporates an adaptive dynamic range optimization (ADRO) amplification strategy can surpass a commercially available monaurally worn linear ALD, SM100. Both subjective and objective measurements were implemented. Mandarin Hearing-In-Noise Test (MHINT) scores were the objective measurement, whereas participant satisfaction was the subjective measurement. The comparison was performed in a mixed design (i.e., subjects' hearing status being mild or moderate, quiet versus noisy, and linear versus ADRO scheme)...
August 28, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Stephanie Wong, Ben Mortenson, Bonita Sawatzky
A rear mounted, powered, drive wheel has been developed to assist with mobility for manual wheelchairs in indoor and outdoor modes. To start the wheel, users must initiate handrim propulsion with sufficient force to trigger the motor. To stop the indoor mode, users must apply a braking force through the handrims exceeding the device's deceleration threshold. The objectives of this study were to compare 1) the minimum force required to start a wheelchair with and without the wheel, and 2) the distances and forces needed to stop a wheelchair at different treadmill speeds (3...
August 18, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Alejandro Caña-Pino, Maria Dolores Apolo-Arenas, Javier Moral-Blanco, Ernesto De la Cruz-Sánchez, Luis Espejo-Antúnez
The objectives of this study are to determine the displacement of the center of pressure (CoP) and its association with the spectral energy density of the acceleration required for the maintenance of postural balance in different standing positions in healthy participants using design observational and setting laboratorial studies. Participants were 30 healthy university students aged between 18 and 32 years old (mean [M] ± standard deviation [SD] = 21,57 ± 3,31 years). Triaxial accelerometer and a pressure platform were used in order to obtain energy spectral density and CoP sway measurements during four balance tasks...
August 18, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Cathrine Widehammar, Helene Lidström, Liselotte Hermansson
The aim was to compare the presence of environmental barriers to participation and facilitators for assistive technology (AT) use and study the relation between barriers and AT use in three different AT devices. A cross-sectional survey was conducted. Inclusion criteria were ≥one year of experience as a user of myoelectric prosthesis (MEP), powered mobility device (PMD), or assistive technology for cognition (ATC) and age 20-90 years. Overall, 156 participants answered the Swedish version of the Craig Hospital Inventory of Environmental Factors and a study-specific questionnaire on facilitating factors...
August 7, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Keara McNair, Madeline Lutjen, Kara Langhamer, Jeremiah Nieves, Kimberly Hreha
One of the most severe types of stroke is locked-in syndrome (LIS) due to the loss of almost all voluntary motor functions and a high mortality rate. The majority of the literature regarding LIS is based on case reports that utilized multidisciplinary interventions focused on improving functional communication and respiratory care with minimal focus on motor retraining. These reports were neither dynamic nor multi-sensory, and the only technology utilized was in the form of augmentative communication. There are additional types of technology frequently used in the general stroke population that can address similar motor deficits that occur in the LIS population...
July 27, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Jangwoon Park, Kwangae Park, Baekhee Lee, Heecheon You, Chungeun Yang
The upper body shape is an important factor to be considered in customized suit jacket design. The present study is intended to identify the lateral upper body shapes of wheelchair users in a sagittal plane. Anthropometric data of 144 Korean male wheelchair users were collected using a tape measure and photography. Three lateral upper body shapes were identified by cluster analysis: convex back with largely protruded abdomen (31%), convex back with flat abdomen (36%), and straight back with moderately protruded abdomen (33%)...
July 27, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Matthew Chin Heng Chua, Jeong Hoon Lim, Raye Chen Hua Yeow
The modelling and experimentation of a pneumatic actuation system for the development of a soft robotic therapeutic glove is proposed in this paper for the prevention of finger deformities in Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) patients. The Rehabilitative Arthritis Glove (RA-Glove) is a soft robotic glove that is fitted with two internal inflatable actuators for lateral compression and massage of the fingers and their joints. Two mechanical models to predict the indentation and bending characteristics of the inflatable actuators based on their geometrical parameters will be presented and validated with experimental results...
July 27, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Suzanne Martin, Elaine Armstrong, Eileen Thomson, Eloisa Vargiu, Marc Solà, Stefan Dauwalder, Felip Miralles, Jean Daly Lynn
Cognitive rehabilitation is established as a core intervention within rehabilitation programs following a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Digitally enabled assistive technologies offer opportunities for clinicians to increase remote access to rehabilitation supporting transition into home. Brain Computer Interface (BCI) systems can harness the residual abilities of individuals with limited function to gain control over computers through their brain waves. This paper presents an online cognitive rehabilitation application developed with therapists, to work remotely with people who have TBI, who will use BCI at home to engage in the therapy...
July 14, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Cornelia Eicher, Marten Haesner, Matthias Spranger, Olena Kuzmicheva, Axel Gräser, Elisabeth Steinhagen-Thiessen
The aim of the study was to identify differences regarding usability, acceptability, and barriers of usage of a robot-supported gait rehabilitation system between a younger and older group of patients with gait impairments. A mobile robot-supported gait rehabilitation prototype was tested on a group of geriatric patients aged 60 and above, and on a group of young patients aged 59 and below in a clinical setting during five therapy sessions. The involved therapists received 2 days training with the system and could test it profoundly...
July 12, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Isao Sakamaki, Kim Adams, Maria Fernanda Gomez Medina, Javier Leonardo Castellanos Cruz, Nooshin Jafari, Mahdi Tavakoli, Heidi Janz
Development of children's cognitive and perceptual skills depends heavily on object exploration and experience in their physical world. For children who have severe physical impairments, one of the biggest concerns is the loss of opportunities for meaningful play with objects, including physical contact and manipulation. Assistive robots can enable children to perform object manipulation through the control of simple interfaces. Touch sensations conveyed through haptic interfaces in the form of force reflection or force assistance can help a child to sense the environment and to control a robot...
July 11, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
François Routhier, Josiane Lettre, William C Miller, Jaimie F Borisoff, Kate Keetch, Ian M Mitchell
In recent years, studies increasingly employed data loggers to record the objective behaviors of powered wheelchair users. Of the data logging work reported in the literature, the technologies used offer marked differences in characteristics. In order to identify and describe the extent of published research activity that relies on data logger technologies for powered wheelchairs, we performed a scoping review of the scientific and grey literature. This scoping review, complementary to a previous one related to manual wheelchairs, is part of a process aiming to help further the development and increase the functionality of data loggers with wheelchairs...
June 29, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Zulqarnain Rashid, Rafael Pous, Christopher S Norrie
People with physical and mobility impairments continue to struggle to attain independence in the performance of routine activities and tasks. For example, browsing in a store and interacting with products located beyond an arm's length may be impossible without the enabling intervention of a human assistant. This research article describes a study undertaken to design, develop, and evaluate potential interaction methods for motor-impaired individuals, specifically those who use wheelchairs. Our study includes a user-centered approach, and a categorization of wheelchair users based upon the severity of their disability and their individual needs...
June 23, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Katalin Zsiga, András Tóth, Tamás Pilissy, Orsolya Péter, Zoltán Dénes, Gábor Fazekas
The growing number of older adults places insurmountable load on family members and professional caregivers. Assistive technology with the aid of robots can present a possible solution. The goal of this article was to test a companion robot supporting older adults in their home environments. Eight senior volunteers were involved in the field test. They all lived alone and were self-supporting. The robot was capable of providing cognitive assistance to manage the user's daily routine. Each participant used the robot for 94...
June 19, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Eitan Raveh, Jason Friedman, Sigal Portnoy
Prosthesis users allocate visual attention to their prosthetic hand while performing activities of daily living (ADLs), due to absence of sensory feedback. Dual-task assignments present competition for visual attention and may affect the performance of ADLs. Vibrotactile feedback (VTF) is a frequently-used method to provide prosthesis users with tactile feedback. However, the effect of adding VTF on visual attention and performance in a motor dual-task paradigm has not been investigated. Our aim was to compare visual attention and performance during ADLs in a motor dual-task paradigm when using binary VTF and without using VTF...
June 19, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Bing-Shiang Yang, Yen-Wan Chen, Ji-Rou Tong
If an assistive device is not acceptable to the user, it will not achieve efficacy and would be resource-wasting. This study employed in-depth interviews to understand what users' individual activities of daily living, problems of using orthoses, and considerations for selecting orthoses are. We conducted qualitative interviews with 35 lower-limb orthosis users, and semi-structured interviews were applied in this study. We analyzed the interview data from transcripts, through coding and concepts, to theories based on grounded theory...
June 9, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Franco H N Chan, Mehdi Eshraghi, Mohammad A Alhazmi, Bonita J Sawatzky
An important aspect of reducing the strain of wheeling is to decrease rolling resistance. Previous laboratory research, using a treadmill, determined that smaller casters significantly increased rolling resistance. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of caster size on various indoor and outdoor surfaces on global wheelchair rolling resistance. Three caster types with sizes 4 in, 5 in, and 6 in, three indoor surfaces, and three outdoor surfaces were studied. A manual wheelchair was passively pulled along each surface at 1...
June 7, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Anne F Cronin
This study explores broad issues associated with assistive technology (AT) service provision in rural school settings. The study was designed to explore the beliefs of practitioners working in rural schools about their role in AT service provision. This article includes an extensive review of the literature and findings from a naturalistic study of AT service provision experience in rural school settings. The study portion of this article involved completion of an open-ended questionnaire followed by semi-structured ethnographic interviews...
June 5, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Martha L Hall, Michele A Lobo
Children with a variety of diagnoses have impairments that limit their arm function. Despite the fact that arm function is important for early learning and activities of daily living, there are few tools to assist movement for these children, and existing devices have challenges related to cost, accessibility, comfort, and aesthetics. In this article, we describe the design process and development of the first garment-based exoskeleton to assist arm movement in young children with movement impairments: the Playskin Lift(TM)...
May 25, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
Yasemin Sarigul-Klijn, Brendan W Smith, David J Reinkensmeyer
Lever-drive wheelchairs lower physical strain but are less maneuverable than push-rim wheelchairs. Here, we study a possible solution in which the user simultaneously actuates clutches mounted between the levers and wheels each stroke via a clutch handle attached to one lever; this solution is of particular interest for user groups with only one functional hand. First, to demonstrate maneuverability, we show how this "yoked clutch" allows an experienced user to maneuver a constrained space. Then, we compared the difficulty of learning a yoked clutch chair to a conventional lever-drive transmission (i...
May 16, 2017: Assistive Technology: the Official Journal of RESNA
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