Machines Assisting Recovery from Stroke - Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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News in 2015

Apr 21

A group of undergrad students from the Hebrew Theological College in Chicago came to see the labs at RIC. They saw demos of both the TBI study in the robotics lab and the VR development for stroke in the hand rehabilitation lab.

Apr 6

RJ Anderson was initially trained on how to use the robotic exoskeleton ReWalk as part of the MARS3 study which helped RJ qualify for take-home device. We are currently training multiple participants who might qualify for take-home devices in the future as part of MARS3.

Here are just a few examples of the media coverage we’ve been receiving. Click to see how RIC's integration of research and innovative technology can change the life of a patient.

ABC: “Exoskeleton Helps Paralyzed Chicago Veteran Walk Again”

WTTW: "Walking Again

WGN: “Exoskeleton helps veteran make history”

Feb 20

MARS3 Principal Investigator, Arun Jayaraman, PhD, PT spoke at Harvard Medical School titled From Bench to Bedside: The Long Walk for Robotic Exoskeletons. The lecture centered on the successful reintegration into society following a neurological injury such as spinal cord injury (SCI) or stroke and how it is significantly influenced by the ability to be upright and mobile. Listen to the lecture.

News in 2014

Machines Assisting Recovery from Stroke

Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center

Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) and its partners will develop an internationally acclaimed center designed to develop and evaluate the utility of robotics for rehabilitation. This center will work toward a future where robotics for rehabilitation are used from applications in therapy to assistance in improvement of managing life after neural injury. As in the past cycles, the focus is substantially on recovery from stroke because they are the largest user group requiring intensive rehabilitation and assistance. However, it will also be a pilot for new applications in spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury and aging, which are also suitable to this maturing field.

Our broad objective is to broaden the use of robotic devices for therapy and/or assistance. While such devices can monitor gains in movement ability, they will also encourage people to train effectively, and will be part of their users’ lives by assisting them in accomplishing desired activities beyond the laboratory.

Machines Assisting Recovery from Stroke (MARS) is a center of excellence established by funding from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) program. Our research focuses on robots for rehabilitation therapy after hemispheric stroke, which is the most common neurological disorder that requires intensive and prolonged rehabilitation. Devices that assist the therapist in providing rationally based, intensive and long duration stroke treatments can also be used to monitor progress and help improve functional performance.

RIC, together with its multi-national partners at Northwestern University, University of Illinois at ChicagoIllinois Institute of TechnologyUniversity of California at Irvine, ETH in Zurich , INAOE, Puebla, Mexico and UAB | The University of Alabama at Birmingham  make up a multicenter effort to use robots to explore new approaches that improve functional outcomes during either reach-and-grasp or full body locomotion activities. There are six key subprojects of intensive study: development, research and training.

Research training is a critical component that includes medical students, residents, physical therapists, occupational therapists and graduate students in engineering and neuroscience. We will leverage the RIC Academy for continuing education, on-site training and archived web-based presentations network.

Robotic activity mobility center in a fitness center for people with neurologic disability

David A. Brown, PT, PhD, PI, University of Alabama at Birmingham
James Rimmer, PhD, subcontract PI, Lakeshore Foundation
Julio Santos, MSME, subcontract PI, HDT Robotics

A multi-user virtual training environment for upper extremity therapy in the home

Derek Kamper, PhD, RIC, IlT, PI
Daria Tsoupikova, M.F.A., UIC, Co-PI
Nikolay Stoykov, PhD, RIC, Co-I
Randy Vick, ATR-BC, SAIC, Co-I
Heidi Fischer, MS, OTR/L, RIC, Research Therapist

Community-ready upper extremity interactive rehabilitation

James Patton, PhD, NU and RIC, PI
Robert Kenyon, PhD, UIC EVL, Co-PI

Development of expertise in use of exoskeletons for walking in individuals with spinal cord injury 

Arun Jayaraman, PT, PhD, RIC & NU, PI
William Zev Rymer, MD, PhD, RIC & NU, Co-PI

A body-machine interface for promoting motor recovery while controlling assistive devices. 

Ferdinando Mussa-Ivaldi, RIC & NU, PI   
Camilla Pierella

Wheelchair-based, robotic, upper extremity exercise and power-assisted propulsion

David J. Reinkensmeyer, PhD, U.C. Irvine, PI
Dan Zondervan, MS, U.C. Irvine, Co-I
Richard Harvey, MD, RIC, Co-I

Wearable robotics for fall prevention

Dr.-Ing. Heike. Vallery, PI, TU Delft, NL and UAE
Hans Arendzen, MD, Co-Pi, ILeiden University Medical Center, NL 

Application of avatar systems

Robert Kenyon, PhD, UIC EVL, Co-PI
Jason Leigh

Find out more about what took place in previous grant cycles. 

This research is supported by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services information:

HHS Grant Award Number: 90RE5010-01-01
HHS CFDA Number: 93.433