Preliminary Development of a Wearable Device to Help Children with Unilateral Cerebral Palsy Increase Their Consciousness of Their Upper Extremity

10/12/2020 ∙ by Jade Clouatre, et al. ∙ 0

Children with unilateral cerebral palsy have movement impairments that are predominant to one of their upper extremities (UE) and are prone to a phenomenon named "developmental disregard", which is characterized by the neglect of their most affected UE because of their altered perception or consciousness of this limb. This can cause them not to use their most affected hand to its full capacity in their day-to-day life. This paper presents a prototype of a wearable technology with the appearance of a smartwatch, which delivers haptic feedback to remind children with unilateral cerebral palsy to use their most affected limb, and which increase sensory afferents to possibly influence brain plasticity. The prototype consists of an accelerometer, a vibration motor and a microcontroller with an algorithm that detects movement of the limb. After a given period of inactivity, the watch starts vibrating to alert the user.

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