TECNALIA develops the first portable robot for intensive home rehabilitation of stroke patients

16 November 2020

It is estimated that treatment efficiency will increase by 15% and cost will be reduced by 25% compared to traditional rehabilitation

In conjunction with GMV Soluciones Globales Internet, TECNALIA Ventures; Próxima, the Maimónides Institute of Biomedical Research of Córdoba (IMIBIC); the Reina Sofía University Hospital in Córdoba, which is part of the Andalusian Health Service (SAS), and the University Medical Center of Groningen (UMCG) in the Netherlands, TECNALIA has developed a portable, affordable robotic assistant that makes it possible to carry out intensive rehabilitation at the patient's home, remotely supervised by a therapist.

The system consists of a robot for performing rehabilitation on the upper limbs that measures the movement made by the patient. The robot works in combination with computer games, both of which were developed by TECNALIA. The robot and the games have been combined with a remote support platform, developed by GMV, which allows therapists to plan rehabilitation sessions in a personalised way and monitor patients' progress while they carry out the therapy at home, thus providing more effective and autonomous care.

The technology has been validated in home environments, both in usability tests in Spain and in an effectiveness study in the Netherlands. The results of the clinical assessment are promising: all participants regained some mobility despite the limited time of the trials, and the perception of usability and acceptance of the system have been well received. The project managers estimate that the effectiveness of the treatment on these patients can be increased by 15% and the total cost of treatment of this kind could be reduced by 25%.

The robotic system, which is currently being certified for marketing, is a reality for stroke patients. We are currently focused on closing the licence agreement for its launch in the European Union in conjunction with TECNALIA Ventures and Próxima. At the same time, the Chinese company QJ Rehab, which specialises in rehabilitation equipment, is working on obtaining certification that will allow this device to enter the Chinese market.

Further information

  • The system is being developed as part of the MERLIN initiative, which is funded by EIT Health.
  • EIT Health.