Siddhartha Sikdar, Professor, Bioengineering, Volgenau School of Engineering, Parag Chitnis, Assistant Professor, Bioengineering, and Guoqing Diao, Associate Professor, Statistics, are working to develop and evaluate a prototype prosthetic control system that uses wearable ultrasound imaging sensors to sense residual muscle activity rather than electromyography.
The vast majority of all trauma-related amputations in the United States involve the upper limbs. Approximately half of those individuals who receive an upper extremity myoelectric prosthesis eventually abandon use of the system, primarily because of their limited functionality.
This novel approach--of using ultrasound imaging--can better distinguish between different functional compartments in the forearm muscles, and provide robust control signals that are proportional to muscle activity. This improved sensing strategy has the potential to significantly improve functionality of upper extremity prostheses, and provide dexterous intuitive control that is a significant improvement over current state of the art noninvasive control methods.
This interdisciplinary project brings together investigators at Mason, commercial partners at Infinite Biomedical Technologies as well as clinicians at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital and Hanger Clinic.
The researchers have two aims for this project.
First, they aim to develop and test a compact, research-grade sonomyographic prosthetic system. As part of this step, they will develop a miniaturized low-power ultrasound imaging system that can be integrated into a prosthetic socket and algorithms for real-time classification and control with multiple degrees of freedom (DOF). They will integrate ultrasound imaging transducers within test prosthetic sockets and complete system integration and testing. They will then evaluate the sonomyographic signal quality with changes in arm position and socket loading with individuals with transradial limb loss in a laboratory setting. Related Stories
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