Methods of Training Human Brain and Body to Walk Using Modular Unpowered Exoskeleton

Case ID:
UA18-185
Invention:

This technology is a non-motorized rehabilitation movement device targeted towards motor-impaired and spinal cord injury (SCI) patients. The device is configured to prevent the back, hip, legs, calves and feet from deviating from normal walking patterns to allow for independent movement and exercise. Ultimately, this technology systematically helps a patient with gait rehabilitation by providing only the support needed at each stage of their process.

 

Background:
Cerebral Palsy (CP) is a disorder that affects movement, muscle tone and motor skills due to irregular brain development, with around 500,000 people affected in the United States alone. Patients with CP or SCI (approximately 282,000 affected) need a variation of therapy and treatment to overcome muscle degeneration and develop motor function in order to stand and walk independently. Current exoskeleton solutions are motorized, extremely costly and are generally not an option for a majority of patients, illustrating the need for an inexpensive apparatus to improve this process. This technology addresses patients' needs to maintain balance and posture, allowing them to learn to stand and walk.

 

Applications:

  • Wellness therapy
  • Medical / healthcare
  • Rehabilitation


Advantages:

  • Simple design
  • Non-motorized
  • Low-cost
  • Allows for a full range of movement
  • Provides gait alignment
  • Provides support from lower back to bottom of foot

Status: issued U.S. patent #11,452,660

Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Brett Mortenson
Licensing Manager, College of Engineering
The University of Arizona
BrettM@tla.arizona.edu
Lead Inventor(s):
Hermelinda Bristol
Keywords: