|Commenced in January 2007||Frequency: Monthly||Edition: International||Paper Count: 649|
Wearable robotics is a potential solution in aiding gait rehabilitation of lower limbs dyskinesia patients, such as knee osteoarthritis or stroke afflicted patients. Many wearable robots have been developed in the form of rigid exoskeletons, but their bulk devices, high cost and control complexity hinder their popularity in the field of gait rehabilitation. Thus, the development of a portable, compliant and low-cost wearable robot for gait rehabilitation is necessary. Inspired by Chinese traditional folding fans and balloon inflators, the authors present an inflatable, foldable and variable stiffness knee exosuit (IFVSKE) in this paper. The pneumatic actuator of IFVSKE was fabricated in the shape of folding fans by using thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) fabric materials. The geometric and mechanical properties of IFVSKE were characterized with experimental methods. To assist the knee joint smartly, an intelligent control profile for IFVSKE was proposed based on the concept of full-cycle energy management of the biomechanical energy during human movement. The biomechanical energy of knee joints in a walking gait cycle of patients could be collected and released to assist the joint motion just by adjusting the inner pressure of IFVSKE. Finally, a healthy subject was involved to walk with and without the IFVSKE to evaluate the assisting effects.
Over the last few years, the amount of data available on the globe has been increased rapidly. This came up with the emergence of recent concepts, such as the big data and the Internet of Things, which have furnished a suitable solution for the availability of data all over the world. However, managing this massive amount of data remains a challenge due to their large verity of types and distribution. Therefore, locating the required file particularly from the first trial turned to be a not easy task, due to the large similarities of names for different files distributed on the web. Consequently, the accuracy and speed of search have been negatively affected. This work presents a method using Electroencephalography signals to locate the files based on their contents. Giving the concept of natural mind waves processing, this work analyses the mind wave signals of different people, analyzing them and extracting their most appropriate features using multi-objective metaheuristic algorithm, and then classifying them using artificial neural network to distinguish among files with similar names. The aim of this work is to provide the ability to find the files based on their contents using human thoughts only. Implementing this approach and testing it on real people proved its ability to find the desired files accurately within noticeably shorter time and retrieve them as a first choice for the user.
In this paper, we report the experimental results on using complementary Golay coded signals at 7.5 MHz to detect breast microcalcifications of 50 µm size. Simulations using complementary Golay coded signals show perfect consistence with the experimental results, confirming the improved signal to noise ratio for complementary Golay coded signals. For improving the success on detecting the microcalcifications, orthogonal complementary Golay sequences having cross-correlation for minimum interference are used as coded signals and compared to tone burst pulse of equal energy in terms of resolution under weak signal conditions. The measurements are conducted using an experimental ultrasound research scanner, Digital Phased Array System (DiPhAS) having 256 channels, a phased array transducer with 7.5 MHz center frequency and the results obtained through experiments are validated by Field-II simulation software. In addition, to investigate the superiority of coded signals in terms of resolution, multipurpose tissue equivalent phantom containing series of monofilament nylon targets, 240 µm in diameter, and cyst-like objects with attenuation of 0.5 dB/[MHz x cm] is used in the experiments. We obtained ultrasound images of monofilament nylon targets for the evaluation of resolution. Simulation and experimental results show that it is possible to differentiate closely positioned small targets with increased success by using coded excitation in very weak signal conditions.
Knee orthotics play an important role in aiding in the recovery of those with knee injuries, especially athletes. However, structural knee orthotics is often very expensive, ranging between $300 and $800. The primary reason for this project was to answer the question: can 3D printed orthotics represent a viable and cost-effective alternative to present structural knee orthotics? The primary objective for this research project was to design a knee orthotic for athletes with knee injuries for a low-cost under $100 and evaluate its effectiveness. The initial design for the orthotic was done in SolidWorks, a computer-aided design (CAD) software available at Loyola Marymount University. After this design was completed, finite element analysis (FEA) was utilized to understand how normal stresses placed upon the knee affected the orthotic. The knee orthotic was then adjusted and redesigned to meet a specified factor-of-safety of 3.25 based on the data gathered during FEA and literature sources. Once the FEA was completed and the orthotic was redesigned based from the data gathered, the next step was to move on to 3D-printing the first design of the knee brace. Subsequently, physical therapy movement trials were used to evaluate physical performance. Using the data from these movement trials, the CAD design of the brace was refined to accommodate the design requirements. The final goal of this research means to explore the possibility of replacing high-cost, outsourced knee orthotics with a readily available low-cost alternative.
In response to widely used wearable medical devices equipped with a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) and insulin pump, the advanced control methods are still demanding to get the full benefit of these devices. Unlike costly clinical trials, implementing effective insulin-glucose control strategies can provide significant contributions to the patients suffering from chronic diseases such as diabetes. This study deals with a key role of two-layer insulin-glucose regulator based on model-predictive-control (MPC) scheme so that the patient’s predicted glucose profile is in compliance with the insulin level injected through insulin pump automatically. It is achieved by iterative optimization algorithm which is called an integrated perturbation analysis and sequential quadratic programming (IPA-SQP) solver for handling uncertainties due to unexpected variations in glucose-insulin values and body’s characteristics. The feasibility evaluation of the discussed control approach is also studied by means of numerical simulations of two case scenarios via measured data. The obtained results are presented to verify the superior and reliable performance of the proposed control scheme with no negative impact on patient safety.
Knee collateral ligaments play a significant role in restraining excessive frontal motion (varus/valgus rotations). In this investigation, a multiscale frame was developed based on structural hierarchies of the collateral ligaments starting from the bottom (tropocollagen molecule) to up where the fibred reinforced structure established. Experimental data of failure tensile test were considered as the principal driver of the developed model. This model was calibrated statistically using Bayesian calibration due to the high number of unknown parameters. Then the model is scaled up to fit the real structure of the collateral ligaments and simulated under realistic boundary conditions. Predications have been successful in describing the observed transient response of the collateral ligaments during tensile test under pre- and post-damage loading conditions. Collateral ligaments maximum stresses and strengths were observed near to the femoral insertions, a results that is in good agreement with experimental investigations. Also for the first time, damage initiation and propagation were documented with this model as a function of the cross-link density between tropocollagen molecules.
The constant monitoring of blood glucose level is necessary for maintaining health of patients and to alert medical specialists to take preemptive measures before the onset of any complication as a result of diabetes. The current clinical monitoring of blood glucose uses invasive methods repeatedly which are uncomfortable and may result in infections in diabetic patients. Several attempts have been made to develop non-invasive techniques for blood glucose measurement. In this regard, the existing methods are not reliable and are less accurate. Other approaches claiming high accuracy have not been tested on extended dataset, and thus, results are not statistically significant. It is a well-known fact that acetone concentration in breath has a direct relation with blood glucose level. In this paper, we have developed the first of its kind, reliable and high accuracy breath analyzer for non-invasive blood glucose measurement. The acetone concentration in breath was measured using MQ 138 sensor in the samples collected from local hospitals in Pakistan involving one hundred patients. The blood glucose levels of these patients are determined using conventional invasive clinical method. We propose a linear regression classifier that is trained to map breath acetone level to the collected blood glucose level achieving high accuracy.
In addition to kidney transplant, renal replacement therapy involves hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis (PD). PD possesses advantages such as maintaining stable physiological blood status and blood pressure, alleviating anemia, and improving mobility, which make it an ideal method for at-home dialysis treatment. However, potential danger still exists despite the numerous advantages of PD, particularly when patients require dialysis exchange four to five times a day, during which improper operation can easily lead to peritonitis. The process of draining and filling is called an exchange and takes about 30 to 40 minutes. Connecting the transfer set requires sterile technique. Transfer set may require a new cap each time that it disconnects from the bag after an exchange. There are many chances to get infection due to unsafe behavior (ex: hand tremor, poor eyesight and weakness, cap fall-down). The proposed semi-automatic connection mechanism used in the PD can greatly reduce infection chances. This light-weight connection device is portable. The device also does not require using throughout the entire process. It is capable of significantly improving quality of life. Therefore, it is very promising to adopt in home care application.
Laparoscopy is a surgical operation, well known as keyhole surgery. The operation is performed through small holes, hence, scars of a patient become much smaller, patients can recover in a short time and the hospital stay becomes shorter in comparison to an open surgery. Several tools are used at laparoscopic operations; among them, the laparoscope has a crucial role. It provides the vision during the operation, which will be the main focus in here. Since the operation area is very small, motion of the surgical tools might be limited in laparoscopic operations compared to traditional surgeries. To overcome this limitation, most of the laparoscopic tools have become more precise, dexterous, multi-functional or automated. Here, we present a robotic-assisted laparoscope that is controlled with pedals directly by a surgeon. Thus, the movement of the laparoscope might be controlled better, so there will not be a need to calibrate the camera during the operation. The need for an assistant that controls the movement of the laparoscope will be eliminated. The duration of the laparoscopic operation might be shorter since the surgeon will directly operate the camera.
The gait pattern in people that present motor limitations foment the demand for auxiliary locomotion devices. These artifacts for movement assistance vary according to its shape, size and functional features, following the clinical applications desired. Among the ortheses of lower limbs, the ankle-foot orthesis aims to improve the ability to walk in people with different neuromuscular limitations, although they do not always answer patients' expectations for their aesthetic and functional characteristics. The purpose of this study is to explore the possibility of using new design in additive manufacturer to reproduce the shape and functional features of a ankle-foot orthesis in an efficient and modern way. Therefore, this work presents a study about the performance of the mechanical forces through the analysis of finite elements in an ankle-foot orthesis. It will be demonstrated a study of distribution of the stress on the orthopedic device in orthostatism and during the movement in the course of patient's walk.
In care for older adults, behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD) like agitation and aggression are distressing for patients and their caretakers, often resulting in premature institutionalization with increased costs of care. To improve mood and mitigate symptoms, as a non-pharmaceutical approach, emotion-oriented therapy like reminiscence work is adopted in face-to-face communication. Telecommunication support is expected to be provided by robotic media as a bridge for digital divide for those with dementia and facilitate social interaction both verbally and nonverbally. The purpose of this case study is to explore the conditions in which robotic media can effectively attract attention from older adults with dementia and promote their well-being. As a pilot study, we introduced the pillow-phone Hugvie®, a huggable humanly shaped communication medium to five residents with dementia at a care facility, to investigate how the following conditions work for the elderly when they use the medium; 1) no sound, 2) radio, non-interactive, 3) daily conversation, and 4) reminiscence work. As a result, under condition 4, reminiscence work, the five participants kept concentration in interacting with the medium for a longer duration than other conditions. In condition 4, they also showed larger amount of utterances than under other conditions. These results indicate that providing topics related to personal histories through robotic media could affect communication positively and should, therefore, be further investigated. In addition, the issue of ethical implications by using persuasive technology that affects emotions and behaviors of older adults is also discussed.
A bio-sensing method, based on the plasmonic property of gold nano-islands, has been developed for detection of exosomes in a clinical setting. The position of the gold plasmon band in the UV-Visible spectrum depends on the size and shape of gold nanoparticles as well as on the surrounding environment. By adsorbing various chemical entities, or binding them, the gold plasmon band will shift toward longer wavelengths and the shift is proportional to the concentration. Exosomes transport cargoes of molecules and genetic materials to proximal and distal cells. Presently, the standard method for their isolation and quantification from body fluids is by ultracentrifugation, not a practical method to be implemented in a clinical setting. Thus, a versatile and cutting-edge platform is required to selectively detect and isolate exosomes for further analysis at clinical level. The new sensing protocol, instead of antibodies, makes use of a specially synthesized polypeptide (Vn96), to capture and quantify the exosomes from different media, by binding the heat shock proteins from exosomes. The protocol has been established and optimized by using a glass substrate, in order to facilitate the next stage, namely the transfer of the protocol to a microfluidic environment. After each step of the protocol, the UV-Vis spectrum was recorded and the position of gold Localized Surface Plasmon Resonance (LSPR) band was measured. The sensing process was modelled, taking into account the characteristics of the nano-island structure, prepared by thermal convection and annealing. The optimal molar ratios of the most important chemical entities, involved in the detection of exosomes were calculated as well. Indeed, it was found that the results of the sensing process depend on the two major steps: the molar ratios of streptavidin to biotin-PEG-Vn96 and, the final step, the capture of exosomes by the biotin-PEG-Vn96 complex. The microfluidic device designed for sensing of exosomes consists of a glass substrate, sealed by a PDMS layer that contains the channel and a collecting chamber. In the device, the solutions of linker, cross-linker, etc., are pumped over the gold nano-islands and an Ocean Optics spectrometer is used to measure the position of the Au plasmon band at each step of the sensing. The experiments have shown that the shift of the Au LSPR band is proportional to the concentration of exosomes and, thereby, exosomes can be accurately quantified. An important advantage of the method is the ability to discriminate between exosomes having different origins.
Alzheimer's prevalence is on the rise, and the disease comes with problems like cessation of treatment, high cost of treatment, and the lack of early detection methods. The pathology of this disease causes the formation of protein deposits in the brain of patients called plaque amyloid. Generally, the diagnosis of this disease is done by performing tests such as a cerebrospinal fluid, CT scan, MRI, and spinal cord fluid testing, or mental testing tests and eye tracing tests. In this paper, we tried to use the Medial Temporal Atrophy (MTA) method and the Leave One Out (LOO) cycle to extract the statistical properties of the three Fz, Pz, and Cz channels of ERP signals for early diagnosis of this disease. In the process of CT scan images, the accuracy of the results is 81% for the healthy person and 88% for the severe patient. After the process of ERP signaling, the accuracy of the results for a healthy person in the delta band in the Cz channel is 81% and in the alpha band the Pz channel is 90%. In the results obtained from the signal processing, the results of the severe patient in the delta band of the Cz channel were 89% and in the alpha band Pz channel 92%.
This paper presents a Monte Carlo (MC) method-based dose distributions on lung tumor for 6 MV photon beam to improve the dosimetric accuracy for cancer treatment. The polystyrene which is tissue equivalent material to the lung tumor density is used in this research. In the empirical calculations, TRS-398 formalism of IAEA has been used, and the setup was made according to the ICRU recommendations. The research outcomes were compared with the state-of-the-art experimental results. From the experimental results, it is observed that the proposed based approach provides more accurate results and improves the accuracy than the existing approaches. The average %variation between measured and TPS simulated values was obtained 1.337±0.531, which shows a substantial improvement comparing with the state-of-the-art technology.
Health information technologies promise higher quality, safer care and much more for both patients and professionals. Despite their promise, they are costly to develop and difficult to implement. On the other hand, user acceptance and usage determine the success of implemented information technology in healthcare. This study provides a model to understand health professionals’ perception and expectation of health information technology. Extensive literature review has been conducted to determine the main factors to be measured. A questionnaire has been designed as a measurement model and submitted to the personnel of an in vitro fertilization clinic. The respondents’ degree of agreement according to five-point Likert scale was 72% for convenient access to data and 69.4% for the importance of data security. There was a significant difference in acceptance of electronic data storage for female respondents. Also, other significant differences between professions were obtained.
Many ophthalmologists can examine declines in visual sensitivity at arbitrary points on the retina using a precise perimetry device with a fundus camera function. However, the retinal layer causing the decline in visual sensitivity cannot be identified by this method. We studied an electroretinogram (ERG) function that can move the center of the multifocal hexagonal stimulus array in order to investigate cryptogenic diseases, such as macular dystrophy, acute zonal occult outer retinopathy, and multiple evanescent white dot syndrome. An electroretinographic optical system, specifically a perimetric optical system, was added to an experimental device carrying the same optical system as a fundus camera. We also added an infrared camera, a cold mirror, a halogen lamp, and a monitor. The software was generated to show the multifocal hexagonal stimulus array on the monitor using C++Builder XE8 and to move the center of the array up and down as well as back and forth. We used a multifunction I/O device and its design platform LabVIEW for data retrieval. The plate electrodes were used to measure electrodermal activities around the eyes. We used a multifocal hexagonal stimulus array with 37 elements in the software. The center of the multifocal hexagonal stimulus array could be adjusted to the same position as the examination target of the precise perimetry. We successfully added the moving ERG function to the experimental ophthalmologic device.
In the last few years, resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) was widely used to investigate the architecture of brain networks by investigating the Blood Oxygenation Level Dependent response. This technique represented an interesting, robust and reliable approach to compare pathologic and healthy subjects in order to investigate neurodegenerative diseases evolution. On the other hand, the elaboration of rs-fMRI data resulted to be very prone to noise due to confounding factors especially the head motion. Head motion has long been known to be a source of artefacts in task-based functional MRI studies, but it has become a particularly challenging problem in recent studies using rs-fMRI. The aim of this work was to evaluate in MS patients a well-known motion correction algorithm from the FMRIB's Software Library - MCFLIRT - that could be applied to minimize the head motion distortions, allowing to correctly interpret rs-fMRI results.
Studying DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) sequence is useful in biological processes and it is applied in the fields such as diagnostic and forensic research. DNA is the hereditary information in human and almost all other organisms. It is passed to their generations. Earlier stage detection of defective DNA sequence may lead to many developments in the field of Bioinformatics. Nowadays various tedious techniques are used to identify defective DNA. The proposed work is to analyze and identify the cancer-causing DNA motif in a given sequence. Initially the human DNA sequence is separated as k-mers using k-mer separation rule. The separated k-mers are clustered using Self Organizing Map (SOM). Using Levenshtein distance measure, cancer associated DNA motif is identified from the k-mer clusters. Experimental results of this work indicate the presence or absence of cancer causing DNA motif. If the cancer associated DNA motif is found in DNA, it is declared as the cancer disease causing DNA sequence. Otherwise the input human DNA is declared as normal sequence. Finally, elapsed time is calculated for finding the presence of cancer causing DNA motif using clustering formation. It is compared with normal process of finding cancer causing DNA motif. Locating cancer associated motif is easier in cluster formation process than the other one. The proposed work will be an initiative aid for finding genetic disease related research.
The aim of this study is to estimate the effect of blood flow through the coronary artery in human heart so as to assess the coronary artery disease.Velocity, wall shear stress (WSS), strain rate and wall pressure distribution are some of the important hemodynamic parameters that are non-invasively assessed with computational fluid dynamics (CFD). These parameters are used to identify the mechanical factors responsible for the plaque progression and/or rupture in left coronary arteries (LCA) in coronary arteries.The initial step for CFD simulations was the construction of a geometrical model of the LCA. Patient specific artery model is constructed using computed tomography (CT) scan data with the help of MIMICS Research 19.0. For CFD analysis ANSYS FLUENT-14.5 is used.Hemodynamic parameters were quantified and flow patterns were visualized both in the absence and presence of coronary plaques. The wall pressure continuously decreased towards distal segments and showed pressure drops in stenotic segments. Areas of high WSS and high flow velocities were found adjacent to plaques deposition.
The readiness potential in brain waves is a brain activity related with an intention whose potential arises even before its conscious intention. This study was carried out in order to understand the generation and mechanism of the readiness potential more. The experiment with two subjects was conducted in two ways following the Oddball task protocol. Firstly, auditory stimuli were randomly presented to the subjects. The subject was allowed to press the keyboard with the right index finger only when the subject heard the target stimulus but not the standard stimulus. Secondly, unlike the first one, the auditory stimuli were randomly presented, and the subjects pressed the keyboard in the same manner, but at the same time with grasping action of the left hand. The readiness potential showed up for both of these experiments. In the first Oddball experiment, the readiness potential was detected only when the target stimulus was presented. However, in the second Oddball experiment with the left hand action of grasping something, the readiness potential was detected at the presentation of for both standard and target stimuli. However, detected readiness potentials with the target stimuli were larger than those of the standard stimuli. We found an interesting phenomenon that the readiness potential was able to be detected even the standard stimulus. This indicates that motor-related readiness potentials can be generated only by the intention to move. These results present a new perspective in psychology and brain engineering since subconscious brain action may be prior to conscious recognition of the intention.