Title: Smartphone-Based Assistant for Walking Rehabilitation of Patients with Parkinson's Disease

Year of Publication: Jan - 2015
Page Numbers: 18-23
Authors: Po-Yi Lee , Shih-Tsang Tang, Shun-Feng Su, Chia-Yen Yang, Tsorng-Lin Chia, Yu-Ching Huang, Wai-Keung Lee
Conference Name: The International Conference on Electrical and Bio-medical Engineering, Clean Energy and Green Computing (EBECEGC2015)
- United Arab Emirates


Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive degenerative disorder. In addition to controlling the condition through medication, rehabilitation is required to maintain physical function, muscular strength, and coordination. Walking is necessary in performing activities of daily living, and it involves moving the feet in straight line and turning the body to change direction. However, patients with PD experience difficulty walking in straight line and turning because of rigidity or freezing. Furthermore, they are at an increased risk of falling. Physical therapists assess the quality of walking rehabilitation and provide verbal feedback to correct their patients’ movements. However, in most cases, patients practice walking and undergo rehabilitation independently; consequently, they cannot evaluate their rehabilitation outcomes, which decreases their intent to continue practicing. This study utilized the internal inertial systems in smartphones (e.g., accelerometers and navigation) to assist patients with independently evaluating their rehabilitation quality. The inertial systems were also used to count the number of steps and record the time that patients spent on walking in a straight line and executing turning movements. Finally, the researchers provided feedback to the patients regarding their movement quality.