Assistive control system using continuous myoelectric signal in robot-aided arm training for patients after stroke

Rong Song, Kai Yu Tong, Xiaoling Hu, Le Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

178 Citations (Scopus)


In some stroke rehabilitation programs, robotic systems have been used to aid the patient to train. In this study, a myoelectrically controlled robotic system with 1 degree-of-freedom was developed to assist elbow training in a horizontal plane with intention involvement for people after stroke. The system could provide continuous assistance in extension torque, which was proportional to the amplitude of the subject's electromyographic (EMG) signal from the triceps, and could provide resistive torques during movement. This study investigated the system's effect on restoring the upper limb functions of eight subjects after chronic stroke in a twenty-session rehabilitation training program. In each session, there were 18 trials comprising different combinations of assistive and resistive torques and an evaluation trial. Each trial consisted of five cycles of repetitive elbow flexion and extension between 90° and 0° at a constant velocity of 10°/s. With the assistive extension torque, subjects could reach a more extended position in the first session. After 20 sessions of training, there were statistically significant improvements in the modified Ashworth scale, Fugl-Meyer scale for shoulder and elbow, motor status scale, elbow extension range, muscle strength, and root mean square error between actual elbow angle and target angle. The results showed that the twenty-session training program improved upper limb functions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-379
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2008


  • Arm tracking
  • Myoelectric control
  • Robot-assisted rehabilitation
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • General Health Professions


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