Handheld Device to Accommodate Essential Tremor
Lead Presenter: Ehsan Abbaszadeh
Additional Presenters: Prof. Rifat Sipahi, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Northeastern University Prof. Andrew Gouldstone, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Northeastern University Dr. Ludy Shih Instructor and Neurologist at Harvard Medical Sch
Faculty Advisor/Principal Investigator: Prof. Rifat Sipahi
Method of Presentation: Poster
Tremor is an involuntary muscle movement, trembling, or shaking of the hands. Caused by either Essential Tremor (ET) or diseases like Parkinson’s and Dystonia, tremors often affect daily activities including feeding, drinking, typing, and writing. An experimental framework based on vibrations, dynamics has been developed that can be used to accommodate hand tremors in one major direction in order to help patients with ET, Dystonia and Parkinson’s perform their daily-life tasks more easily. The stabilizing framework in this project is specifically designed to be attached to a cup in order to improve the precision and reduce spillage during drinking and pouring motions in people with hand tremor problem. A high speed rotating disk has been used as a source of angular momentum, producing gyroscopic effect when an input torque caused by tremors is applied to it. Using a rotating gimbal, this gyroscopic effect can be converted to a useful stabilizing torque which will eventually be in the opposite direction of incoming torque and thus help to stabilize the cup. The experimental results show the effectiveness of this method in decreasing the angular accelerations of a cup being imposed to hand tremors.