Bluetooth-enabled motion sensing device boosts cerebral palsy therapy
For patients undergoing treatment for cerebral palsy or for ones with affected motor movement of the hand due to stroke, trauma or spinal cord injuries, a team of students at the Rice University have invented a Bluetooth-enabled device that keeps track of the patient’s progress in therapy or rehabilitation. Dubbed the DeXcellence platform, the device is like a board game that users can have fun using. Designed primarily to test abilities of patients with cerebral palsy, the Bluetooth device has a small peg in the center and is made to boost cerebral palsy therapy. The peg is comfortable to hold and it embedded with electronic sensors that inform any Bluetooth-connected tablet or smartphone of how the peg is moving in space.
On the DeXcellence device, the Rice team is able to track dexterity of cerebral palsy patients. To carry out a Functional Dexterity Test, the board game comprises of a Bluetooth-enabled cylinder, a hurdle and target on either side of the hurdle. The patient is required to move the cylinder (from the center of one target) over a hurdle and place it in the center of a target on the other side. Since the cylinder attached to electronic sensors is consistently sending out patient’s speed and orientation data to a Bluetooth device; a software from Rice team can provide therapists with a clear picture of the progress of the patient in this physical therapy.
On the flip side of the board is another game. A game which comprises of the zig-zag path that the patient tracks with the peg. The patient is required to move the peg over the path, which enables therapists to accumulate a lot of valuable information regarding the patient’s progress. The benefit of creating the DeXcellence platform is that the peg-embedded with motion-capture technology provides motion path data, which therapists cannot gather with the eyes alone.