The effect of pelvic movements of a gait training system for stroke patients: a single blind, randomized, parallel study

Choonghyun Son, Anna Lee, Junkyung Lee, Dae Eun Kim, Seung Jong Kim, Min Ho Chun, Junho Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Aging societies lead to higher demand for gait rehabilitation as age-related neurological disorders such as stroke and spinal cord injury increase. Since conventional methods for gait rehabilitation are physically and economically burdensome, robotic gait training systems have been studied and commercialized, many of which provided movements confined in the sagittal plane. For better outcomes of gait rehabilitation with more natural gait patterns, however, it is desirable to provide pelvic movements in the transverse plane. In this study, a robotic gait training system capable of pelvic motions in the transverse plane was used to evaluate the effect of the pelvic motions on stroke patients. Method: Healbot T, which is a robotic gait training system and capable of providing pelvic movements in the transverse plane as well as flexion/extension of the hip and knee joints and adduction/abduction of the hip joints, is introduced and used to evaluate the effect of the pelvic movement on gait training of stroke patients. Gait trainings in Healbot T with and without pelvic movements are carried out with stroke patients having hemiparesis. Experiment: Twenty-four stroke patients with hemiparesis were randomly assigned into two groups and 23 of them successfully completed the experiment except one subject who had dropped out due to personal reasons. Pelvis-on group was provided with pelvic motions whereas no pelvic movement was allowed for pelvis-off group during 10 sessions of gait trainings in Healbot T. Electromyography (EMG) signals and interaction forces as well as the joint angles of the robot were measured. Gait parameters such as stride length, cadence, and walking speed were measured while walking on the ground without assistance of Healbot T after gait training on 1st, 5th, and 10th day. Result: Stride length significantly increased in both groups. Furthermore, cadence and walking speed of the pelvis-on group were increased by 10.6% and 11.8%. Although interaction forces of both groups except the thighs showed no differences, EMG signals from gluteus medius of the pelvis-on group increased by 88.6% during stance phase. In addition, EMG signals of biceps femoris, gastrocnemius medial, and gastrocnemius lateral of the pelvis-on group increased whereas EMG signals of the pelvis-off group except gastrocnemius lateral showed no difference after gait trainings. Conclusion: Gait training using a robotic gait training system with pelvic movements was conducted to investigate the effects of lateral and rotational pelvic movements in gait training of stroke patients. The pelvic movements affected to increase voluntary muscle activation during the stance phase as well as cadence and walking speed. Clinical trial registration: KCT0003762, 2018-1254, Registered 28 October 2018, https://cris.nih.go.kr/cris/search/search_result_st01_kren.jsp?seq=14310&ltype=&rtype=.

Original languageEnglish
Article number185
JournalJournal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Rehabilitation
  • Health Informatics

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