Mechanical linkage design for haptic rehabilitation and development of fine motor skills

by Streng, Bradley Taylor

Abstract (Summary)
Thousands of children and adults suffer from fine motor skill deficits due to developmental disabilities or brain trauma. In order to acquire or reclaim these precision motor movements, occupational therapists work closely with each patient to develop the muscle memory required for completing tasks such as handwriting or drawing. Although successful, occupational therapy is expensive and can be embarrassing or frustrating for children and adults. Recent advancements in tactile based robotic simulation, also known as haptics, have provided an opportunity to experience low cost, three dimensional, forced virtual object interaction. The work presented in this paper takes advantage of current haptic technology in order to create a device which facilitates traditional occupational therapy techniques. An inexpensive, attractive, and versatile solution for handwriting training and rehabilitation was developed using a mechanical linkage connected to the Novint Falcon haptic device. Several phases of design resulted in a mechanical linkage which was conceptualized and manufactured.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Bay, Brian K.; Bay, Brian K.; Kennedy, Timothy C.; Paasch, Robert K.; Gupta, Rakesh

School:Oregon State University

School Location:USA - Oregon

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:fine motor skill haptics novint falcon handwriting occupational therapy proprioception pantograph dysgraphia linkage rehabilitation disabilities design technological innovations learning penmanship technology robotics in medicine and construction


Date of Publication:12/11/2008

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