Volume 49 Number 3, 2012
Pages 395 — 404
Abstract–We have developed a set of upper-limb functional tasks to guide the design and test the performance of rehabilitation technologies that restore arm motion in people with high tetraplegia. Our goal was to develop a short set of tasks that would be representative of a much larger set of activities of daily living (ADLs), while also being feasible for a user of a unilateral, implanted functional electrical stimulation (FES) system. To compile this list of tasks, we reviewed existing clinical outcome measures related to arm and hand function and were further informed by surveys of patient desires. We ultimately selected a set of five tasks that captured the most common components of movement seen in ADLs and is therefore highly relevant for assessing FES-restored unilateral arm function in individuals with high cervical spinal cord injury. The tasks are intended to be used when setting design specifications and for evaluating and standardizing rehabilitation technologies under development. While not unique, this set of tasks will provide a common basis for comparing different interventions (e.g., FES, powered orthoses, robotic assistants) and testing different user command interfaces (e.g., sip-and-puff, head joysticks, brain-computer interfaces).
Key words: activities of daily living, functional assessment, functional electrical stimulation, functional evaluation, functional neuromuscular stimulation, outcome measures, spinal cord injury, tasks, tetraplegia, upper limb.
Last Reviewed or Updated Thursday, April 26, 2012 12:00 PM