Hot Topic: Assistive TechnologyBy Laferrier, Justin Z.; PN: Paraplegia News, Vol. 64, No. 5, pp. 18-20
Publication Date: May 2010
Article provides an overview of lectures given at the 2010 State of the Science Symposium: Assistive Technology for People With Disabilities, presented by Walter Reed Army Medical Center in collaboration with the Human Engineering Research Laboratories (HERL) of the Department of Veterans Affairs and the University of Pittsburgh. Lecture topics included (1) telerehabilitation, as exemplified by research conducted at the University of Pittsburgh, where 46 study participants received expert guidance during wheelchair prescription and fitting from a remote location; (2) current techniques in shoulder rehabilitation, including a presentation of the Maryland-Georgetown-Army (MGA) Exoskeleton, a low weight, portable robotic device capable of providing high torque through 90 percent of the range of motion of a human arm; (3) “Seeing Without Eyes: Sensory Substitution for the Blind,” featuring the Brain Port, an implantable device in development at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center that uses a camera to send an image to an electro-tactile display, allowing the wearer to “see”; (4) post stroke gait training using the Zero G Over-Ground Body-Weight Support System, developed at the National Rehabilitation Hospital, which provides static unloading and dynamic body weight support during overground training; a motor drives the system on a track above the individual, who only feels the vertical force; (5) the Amputee Virtual Environment Support Space (AVESS), developed at the Army Medical Department Advanced Technology Initiative (AAMTI), a virtual reality support system designed for people with acquired limb loss; (6) research conducted at HERL on safety and robotic mobility systems, including the development of better suspension, automotive-like stability control, improved battery technology, and smart pressure relief systems; and (7) assistive technology (AT) service delivery at Pittsburgh’s Center for Assistive Technology (CAT) by a multidisciplinary team of physicians, rehab engineers, audiologists, AT suppliers, and physical, occupational, and speech therapists.
Published by: PVA Publications (Website:http://www.pvamagazines.com)
Paralyzed Veterans of America (Web Site: http://www.pva.org )