Exoskeleton Optimization and PAD
Exoskeleton optimization for reducing gait variability in patients with Peripheral Artery Disease
We propose to use a powered hip exoskeleton to treat this gait impairment. We hypothesize that an optimized exoskeleton will be able to reduce the walking variability and metabolic cost of the patients and increase their walking endurance.
The use of a hip exoskeleton avoids placement of a device on the lower leg, thereby minimizing the risk of skin irritation and ulcers. When using exoskeletons, it is crucial to optimize the timing and force magnitude of the pattern by which the assistance is provided over the course of the gait cycle.
We will evaluate walking endurance using 6-minute walking tests on a self-paced treadmill. We will conduct tests in random order with and without the exoskeleton. We will measure the difference in metabolic cost between walking with and without the exoskeleton using indirect calorimetry.
If the proposed research is successful, we will demonstrate that powered hip exoskeletons can be a treatment option for patients with PAD. We have an excellent history of producing and disseminating relevant data.
Inquire to participate in exoskeleton research.