Currently in the western industrialised nations about 2-5% of total health costs are caused by stroke. Due to demographic changes, the number of strokes will continue to rise, and at the same time developments in society are moving away from the extended family and with it the resulting possibilities for providing care in the family. This increases the need for the rehabilitative after care of stroke patients.
A new trend in this area is the so-called self-training of patients which is expected to produce enormous therapeutic and economic potential.
In this context, ROREAS (Interactive robotic rehabilitation assistant for running and orientation training of patients after strokes) is a robotic rehabilitation assistant for use in running and orientation training to be developed in clinical stroke after care for this type of self-training.
The robotic rehab assistant accompanies inpatient stroke patients running exercises in order to train the mobility of patients and simultaneously also their spatial ability. It monitors the implementation and documentation of training. Robotic rehabilitation assistants also reduce the fears of the patient from excessive demands on oneself ( “Will I come back safely?” “Can I?”, “I might get lost in the building?”) which also obstacles to a self-training are.
Overall, the project requires a consistent integration of robust autonomous navigation in real environments, powerful and practical for everyday use man-machine interaction and more intuitive assistant functionality with personalized training programs. In addition, the acceptance of restricting and promoting factors in the use of such rehabilitation assistants are analysed in terms of their medical effectiveness.
Photo credit: “iStock.com”. Material used in the preparation of this article has been drawn from ROREAS.org.