Hand of Hope is a state of the art rehabilitation tool that uses the principles of neuroscience to help stroke patients restore movement to a paralysed hand.
Hand of Hope, a sophisticated rehabilitation tool created by Rehab Robotics, uses robotics and neuroscience to assist with hand rehabilitation. The robotic hand is the only portable, wearable robotic device that can help stroke patients restore movement of the hand by motivating them to use their own muscle signals to relearn how to use the affected hand. Hand of Hope uses advanced technology that allows patients to start moving the weakened muscles on their own and to control their movement.
During training, patients wear the robotic hand on their impaired hand and have two EMG sensors attached to the extensor and flexor muscles. Electromyography (EMG) is a technique used to detect the electrical potential generated by muscle cells when they are activated, either neurologically or electrically, and to evaluate and record the electrical activity produced by skeletal muscles. In clinical settings, the technique is used to analyse the biomechanics of movement and to diagnose neuromuscular diseases.
Stroke rehabilitation generally entails repetitive movements that help the brain rewire neurological pathways and restore motor function. Hand of Hope facilitates motor relearning by amplifying and rewarding the patient with the desired movement. The robotic hand monitors the affected muscles, but doesn't stimulate them. Instead, the patient starts the movement himself through EMG signals that indicate the intention to move the affected hand. The system processes the data and sends it to a motor on the robotic hand to enable the movement. The entire process happens very quickly. The repetitive exercises using the Hand of Hope enable stroke patients to perform routine daily activities such as holding, picking and opening.
Hand of Hope was developed to facilitate motor control, coordination and muscle relaxation for people affected by stroke, traumatic brain injury (TBI), cerebral palsy, or arteriovenous malformation (AVM). The system comes with a series of interactive games designed to enhance training outcomes. The games were created to help with specific activities, including hand opening, grasping, and arm training. The games have several levels of difficulty and the higher levels require patients to move their arm in order to complete the game mission.
Rehab Robotics is a Hong Kong-based company specialising in developing technologies that maximise patients' recovery. The company uses advanced muscle re-education concepts and works with rehabilitation specialists and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University to develop and improve tools for motor recovery.
Founder and CEO Michael Tsui was originally a physiotherapist, and was inspired to create this product because he saw a gap in the market of rehabilitation devices specialising in hand and finger mobility.
Watch the video to learn more about the Hand of Hope.