Friday, February 1, 2013

Computer-assisted upper extremity training using interactive biking exercise (iBikE) platform.

Computer-assisted upper extremity training using interactive biking exercise (iBikE) platform.



Upper extremity exercise training has been shown to improve clinical outcomes in different chronic health conditions. Arm-operated bicycles are frequently used to facilitate upper extremity training however effective use of these devices at patient homes is hampered by lack of remote connectivity with clinical rehabilitation team, inability to monitor exercise progress in real time using simple graphical representation, and absence of an alert system which would prevent exertion levels exceeding those approved by the clinical rehabilitation team. We developed an interactive biking exercise (iBikE) platform aimed at addressing these limitations. The platform uses a miniature wireless 3-axis accelerometer mounted on a patient wrist that transmits the cycling acceleration data to a laptop. The laptop screen presents an exercise dashboard to the patient in real time allowing easy graphical visualization of exercise progress and presentation of exercise parameters in relation to prescribed targets. The iBikE platform is programmed to alert the patient when exercise intensity exceeds the levels recommended by the patient care provider. The iBikE platform has been tested in 7 healthy volunteers (age range: 26-50 years) and shown to reliably reflect exercise progress and to generate alerts at pre-setup levels. Implementation of remote connectivity with patient rehabilitation team is warranted for future extension and evaluation efforts.

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