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Communications of the ACM

ACM Careers

Plan Will Send Rehabilitation Robots Home With Stroke Patients

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therapist and subject demonstrate rehabilitation robot

A therapist demonstrates robot-mediated motor therapy at Chulalongkorn University.

Credit: Chulalongkorn University

Plans to let stroke patients borrow rehabilitation robots for use at home are underway in Thailand.

Developed by a research team from Chulalongkorn University in cooperation with Chula Medicine, the robots "train patients to use their arms and legs repeatedly to stimulate the brain's command center through interesting games, and return them to a normal life," says Professor Viboon Sangveraphunsiri of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Chulalongkorn.

The plan calls for patients to rent a robot for home use by paying a monthly fee, enabling rehab without traveling to the hospital, assisted by caregivers and monitored by a team of physical therapists. "The robots are designed to assist physiotherapists and occupational therapists," says Associate Professor Dr. Wasuwat Kitisomprayoonkul, head of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at Chulalongkorn.

The robots are currently used to rehabilitate patients at the King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital in Bangkok. There are five types: two are shoulder and elbow training robots, two are wrist training robots, and one is a hip, knee, and ankle training robot.

From Chulalongkorn University
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