Using exoskeletons to assist medical staff during prone positioning of mechanically ventilated COVID-19 patients: a pilot study

by   Serena Ivaldi, et al.

We conducted a pilot study to evaluate the potential and feasibility of back-support exoskeletons to help the caregivers in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the University Hospital of Nancy (France) executing Prone Positioning (PP) maneuvers on patients suffering from severe COVID-19-related Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome. After comparing four commercial exoskeletons, the Laevo passive exoskeleton was selected and used in the ICU in April 2020. The first volunteers using the Laevo reported very positive feedback and reduction of effort, confirmed by EMG and ECG analysis. Laevo has been since used to physically assist during PP in the ICU of the Hospital of Nancy, following the recrudescence of COVID-19, with an overall positive feedback.



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