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ArmAware: a novel device to treat hemiplegia and hemispatial neglect
The Investigators have developed a novel therapeutic device called ArmAware, that is designed to be an adjunctive treatment for adults and children with hemiparesis (weakness on one side of the body), by providing stimulation to the affected arm and “reminding” the person to use that arm. We have partnered with MPR Associates, an engineering firm, for development aspects. 20 prototypes have been developed that include an accelerometer to measure movement in a continuous fashion, and programmable settings to provide stimulation based on set duration, frequency, and intensity.
This study will allow us to collect preliminary data to further determine the parameters of the device, leading to modifications to the existing prototype.
Specifically (Aim 1), we plan to study the accelerometry measurements during daily activities in adults and children, with and without hemiparesis.
This will allow MPR to develop specific software algorithms for analysis of movement measurements that will be critical for future studies of the efficacy of the device, and to develop parameters of non-movement that, when detected, will activate the device in later prototypes.
In addition (Aim 2), we will examine the movement measurements in the time prior to the activation of the device, compared with measurements after the stimulation, to obtain preliminary data regarding whether stimulation increases arm use.
Finally (Aim 3), we will perform exploratory analyses to see if severity of hemispatial neglect (inattention to one side of the body), anosagnosia (unawareness), or other medical parameters (e.g., time since injury, pre-trial upper extremity use) is associated with the utility of the device.
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