Ubiquitous personal assistive system for neuropathy

Foad Dabiri
Alireza Vahdatpour
Hagop Hagopian
Majid Sarrafzadeh
Proceedings of the 2nd International Workshop on Systems and Networking Support for Health Care and Assisted Living Environments, ACM(2008), 17:1-17:6


The improvement in processor performance through continuous breakthroughs in transistor technology has resulted in the proliferation of lightweight embedded systems. Advances in wireless technology and embedded systems have enabled remote healthcare and telemedicine. Continuous and real-time monitoring can discretely analyze how a patient's lifestyle affects his/her physiological conditions and if additional symptoms occur under various stimuli. Diabetes is one of most difficult challenges facing the health-care industry today. One of the primary afflictions of diabetic patients is peripheral neuropathy (loss of sensation in the foot). As a direct result of this condition, the likelihood of ulcer increases which in many cases leads to to amputation. We have developed a wireless electronic orthotics composed of lightweight embedded systems and non-invasive sensors which can be used by diabetic patients suffering from peripheral neuropathy. Our proposed system monitors feet motion and pressure distribution beneath the feet in real-time and classifies the state of the patient. The proposed system detects the conditions that could potentially cause a foot ulcer. This system enables a continuous feedback mechanism for instance in case of an undesired behavior or condition a preemptive message wirelessly to the patient's cell phone/PDA/PC and over the WEB to the patient's care-giver. This system can potentially reduce the amputation rates resulting from neuropathy by a huge factor.

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