PolyU has achieved a remarkable breakthrough in rehabilitation device development. The Mobile Ankle-foot Exoneuromusculoskeleton is the first-of-its-kind multimodal robot for ankle-foot rehabilitation specifically designed for stroke patients with hemiplegia to improve the motor function of their lower limbs and walking ability.


Foot drop and inversion are common functional impairments that greatly affect the daily lives of stroke patients. The Mobile Ankle-foot Exoneuromusculoskeleton, developed by Dr Hu Xiaoling, Associate Professor of the PolyU Department of Biomedical Engineering, is an innovative multimodal wearable robot for ankle-foot rehabilitation. It combines exoskeleton, soft pneumatic muscles, tactile sensory feedback and neuromuscular electrical stimulation technology in one system.


The Mobile Ankle-foot Exoneuromusculoskeleton is a lightweight device, weighing about 400g, and designed like sportswear for easy unilateral wear by hemiplegic patients. It has low power consumption, offering four hours of continuous use with a rechargeable battery which allows patients to perform rehabilitation exercises anytime, anywhere - at home, outdoors or indoors.


Dr Hu emphasised that the Mobile Ankle-foot Exoneuromusculoskeleton is a result of PolyU’s interdisciplinary research strength. She said, “This research achievement provides stroke patients a better option for lower limb rehabilitation training, incorporating the training into their daily activities.” Her team plans to commercialise this device next year.


The research team incorporated Internet of Things technology into a mobile app to record patients’ rehabilitation progress. This approach enables real-time monitoring, personalised guidance and reminders, enhancing patient engagement and treatment outcomes even without a therapist present. Patients can also support each other through the app. Therapists can remotely monitor and supervise multiple patients, ensuring smooth rehabilitation progress.


For more information, please visit: https://polyu.me/3FFz2rO