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CUHK Researcher Invents Ankle Robot to Rehabilitate Stroke Patients

Prof. Tong Kai-yu Raymond (3rd left) and Dr. Wai Hon-wah (4th left)

Researchers at CUHK and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have jointly devised an Interactive Exoskeleton Ankle Robot for rehabilitation of stroke patients with foot drop problem, or people with muscle weakness or joint problem in the ankle. The device will help users to walk safer in both indoor and outdoor environments.

Drop foot is a neuromuscular disorder that affects a person’s ability to raise the foot at the ankle, resulting in the foot dragging on the ground during walking. This gait abnormality is common among stroke survivors. Foot drop symptoms often involve steppage gait and outward leg swinging which increase risks of falling and ankle spraining.

Conventional rehabilitative walking exercises are of high intensity and repetitive. The new interactive Exoskeleton Ankle Robot is developed by Prof. Tong Kai-yu Raymond at the Department of Electronic Engineering, CUHK and Dr. Wai Hon-wah at the Industrial Centre, PolyU. This active robotic system is light in weight and easy to use. It can be fit on a patient’s shank to serve as an exoskeleton (external bone) to help the patient control his or her leg. With its motion and force sensors, the robot can sense a user’s gait pattern and predict the user’s next motion. The robot will then provide power assistance to support ankle joint movement during walking or going up and down stairs.

For details, please click here.


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