WiFi-enabled hand-portable real-time force sensor to objectively assess strength

Period of Performance: 04/01/2013 - 09/30/2013

$148K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Kayo Technology, Inc.
Madison, WI 53719
Principal Investigator

Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Implementation of evidence-based prescriptive exercise practices in rehabilitation therapy demands an objective muscular strength assessment method that is fast, reliable, portable, cost effective, and kinetic (i.e., able to test the full rnge of motion). It would also be helpful for therapists to track patient compliance (exercises by reps, sets, resistance, and timing) between therapy sessions. This would aid clinical research by elucidating specific exercise parameters only identifiable with kinetic measurement, helping to establish baselines for the rate and progression of neuromuscular diseases (ALS, MS, Parkinson's, etc.). Practitioners could then compare their patients to objective standards. It could assess geriatric fall risk, standardize physical testing, and objectify development assessment. Current assessment and compliance tracking methods form barriers to the implementation of these practices due to subjectivity, inability to test the full range of motion, non-portability, or high costs. Over the course of Phases I &II, Kayo Technology will address these needs by developing a system of objective muscle strength assessment and compliance tracking using software and the kiio, a proprietary device (to be hand-portable, compatible with common equipment like resistance cables, and capable of rapid, kinetic muscle strength assessment.) The kiio will digitally transmit data in real-time via WiFi to software on a PC, table or smart phone. The system aims to eliminate current barriers to evidence-based practices, allowing for valid, consistent assessment and progress tracking. Ultimately, its cost effectiveness will permit clinics to send the devices with their patients. There it will objectivel track patient compliance with their exercise regimen between therapy sessions, improving patient compliance and reporting. It is anticipated that by increasing objectivity in assessment and allowing therapists to track patient compliance between therapy sessions that such a device could significantly enhance clinical efficiency and increase positive outcomes, in turn, reducing the disability burden on the U.S. population (in both individual and societal costs). To show feasibility in Phase I, Kayo will engineer, program, and prototype a functional device that meets all of these requirements (Aim 1);Kayo will calibrate it to accurately identify and output force measurements wirelessly to a PC (Aim 2);and, Kayo will test the device for extended-use reliability and durability (Aim 3). In Phase II, additional refinements will be made to the device and software, and testing will be performed within a clinical population. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Kayo proposes to develop a device that will aid physical and occupational therapists by objectively assessing muscle strength and tracking patient compliance with prescribed exercise regimens. It is anticipated that this functionality will significantly enhance clinical efficiency and increase positive outcomes, in turn, reducing the disability burden on the U.S. population (in both individual and societal costs). It would also aid clinical research by helping to establish baselines for the rate and progression of neuromuscular diseases, like Parkinson's or ALS.