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Motor Recovery with Paired Associative Stimulation (RecoveriX)

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - RecoveriX (Motor Recovery with Paired Associative Stimulation (RecoveriX))

Reporting period: 2017-02-01 to 2018-05-31

Patients around the world need therapy to improve motor function. Motor disabilities may result from many causes, including traumatic brain injury (TBI), stroke, congenital conditions and some diseases. Rehabilitation therapy at a major hospital or rehabilitation center is expensive, time-consuming, and rarely results in major improvements, especially in the short term. However, new research from G.TEC and others has shown that practical brain-computer interface (BCI) systems can substantially improve motor rehabilitation outcomes without extensive additional burden on patients, therapists, or carers.

What is recoveriX?
recoveriX is a new form of therapy specifically developed for the rehabilitation of hand and foot movements after a stroke. This method can be used for treatment in the acute Phase, sub-acute Phase as well as in the chronic phase.

How does recoveriX work?
Success through a combination of three rehabilitation approaches
A stroke impairs your ability to actually move, but not your ability to think about a movement. Think about moving your hand or foot. The imagination of a movement produces brain activity similar to the performance of a movement – this is exactly what we take advantage of!

1. Mental imagination
Imagine moving your hand or foot. The recoveriX system measures brain activity.

2. Visual presentation
The simulation on the screen shows the movement you are imagining, which generates feedback for success.

3. Electrical muscle stimulation
The imagined movement becomes a real movement through electrical stimulation of the affected muscles – without any pain!
The recoveriX project recruited hardware engineers, software engineers, quality managment people, commercialization experts and physiotherapist for running the recoveriX gyms. Furthermore, project meetings were made and an advisory board was installed. In WP2 all hardware specifications were made and the team realized a small and portable recoveriX hardware platform. In WP3 all software requirements were installed and the signal processing was implemented. In WP4 different thirt-party rehabiliation devices were identified and specification for interfacing were worked out and the most important devices were interfaced. WP5 installed 12 validation partners ranging from Japan, China, Austria, Italy to the USA. Ethical and experimental protocols were setup. In WP6 the commercialization was done with the identification of exhibitions and workshop sites and a dissemination and exploitation plan was developed. Meetings in Europe and the USA were already successfully attended. The first exhibitions were already done and the first distributor workshop was performed. In the last workpackage, WP7 the plans for the recoveriX-gyms were developed and currently patients are coming in for Validation measurements.
recoveriX will be a new standard for motor rehabiliation because it is pairing cognitive processes with motor movements which allows a very effective training. The patient has to imagine a motor movement and the brain-computer Interface (BCI) is able to detect it in order to trigger a functional electrical stimulator to move the corresponding limb. Additionally, the patient is seeing the movement of an avatar and of his own hand and this triggers the mirror neuron network which is coupled with the sensorimotor cortex. The BCI system is able to pick up this activation and this produces brain plasticity so that patients recover from the motor impairment. The recoveriX system is already installed in recoveriX-gyms with professional therapists to provide a complete service structure for the patients.