Gait-monitoring wearable technology for transtibial prosthetics

Kolby V. Hebert, Rachel S. Keen, Derek R.K. Ing, Sally F. Shady

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Approximately 40,000 transtibial amputations occur each year in the United States. Current lower leg prosthetic options range from passive artificial limbs to computerized electronic models [1]. Because of insurance limitations, most patients use less sophisticated prosthetics. The average cost of lower leg prosthetics and corresponding medical care for single-leg veterans is at least $1.4 million due to increased rehabilitation times [1]. Gait training methods for transtibial amputees include extended rehabilitation processes lasting up to 9 months. These exercises provide no empirical data to analyze patient gait progress. The device design is a wearable technology that acquires gait information that is evidentiary for physicians when deciding to continue or dismiss further rehabilitation and follow up medical appointments. The technology includes a gyroscope, accelerometer, microprocessor, and electronic components housed in a 3D printed casing that is attachable to any prosthetic, or a biological leg. Pressure sensors are embedded into a sock-like foot covering that is used in tandem with the other electronics. Gait data collection was validated by comparing gait parameter values with literature values. A series of control tests on non-Amputees was conducted in order to gather standard data and develop consistent testing practices for the prototype design. These findings are used as a reference when evaluating amputee gait data against non-Amputee gait data. As the microprocessor collects data, information is stored onto a memory card used to relay data to the developed program for data analysis. Data analysis is supported by a graphical user interface via LabView which provides valuable gait data to physicians and physical therapists. Gait data analysis is expected to result in asymmetrical patterns for below-The-knee amputees compared to non-Amputees as well as abnormal pressure loads throughout the foot [1].

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBiomedical and Biotechnology Engineering
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Electronic)9780791850534
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016
EventASME 2016 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2016 - Phoenix, United States
Duration: Nov 11 2016Nov 17 2016

Publication series

NameASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings (IMECE)
Volume3

Conference

ConferenceASME 2016 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPhoenix
Period11/11/1611/17/16

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering

Keywords

  • 3D printing
  • Accelerometer
  • Data acquisition
  • Gait
  • Gait phases
  • Gyroscope
  • Pressure sensor
  • Prosthetic
  • Rehabilitation
  • Transtibial
  • Wearable

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