Volume 50 Number 8, 2013
Pages 1129 — 1138
Abstract — The wrist-driven flexor hinge orthosis (WDFHO) is a device used to restore hand function in persons with tetraplegic spinal cord injury by furnishing three-point prehension. We assessed the effectiveness and biomechanical properties of the WDFHO in 24 persons with cervical 6 or 7 tetraplegia who have severely impaired hand function. This study introduces a mechanical operating model to assess the efficiency of the WDFHO. Experimental results showed that pinch force increased significantly (p < 0.001) after using the WDFHO and was found to positively correlate with the strength of wrist extensor muscles (r = 0.41, p < 0.001). However, when the strength of the wrist extensors acting on the WDFHO was greater, the reciprocal wrist and finger motion that generates three-point prehension was less effective (r = 0.79, p < 0.001). Reliable and valid biomechanical evaluation of the WDFHO could improve our understanding of its biomechanics.
Key words: biomechanics, efficiency, finger motion, hand function, mechanical operating model, pinch force, spinal cord injury, three-point prehension, wrist-driven flexor hinge orthosis, wrist extensor muscles.
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Last Reviewed or Updated Wednesday, December 11, 2013 9:34 AM