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A Smart Wearable Device for Monitoring Low Back Pain Rehabilitation


Currently, assessment and evaluation of low back pain (LBP) are based on

questionnaires on patients’ levels of pain and discomfort. This qualitative

assessment can be highly subjective with limited accuracy in accessing the

progress of rehabilitation.

Thus, a smart wireless Electromyography (EMG) device integrated with a

smartphone-based application is developed to monitor the progression of low back pain rehabilitation. The evaluation algorithm implemented on an Android smartphone application determines improvement in muscle performance.


The system consists of EMG acquisition hardware in conjunction with signal

processing and analysis software applications on android smartphones. The device acquires EMG signals from erector spinae (ES) muscles at L4 and L5 lumbar regions. The signals are then processed, amplified, and sent to the microcontroller for analog-digital conversion. Real-time EMG signals are sent wirelessly to smartphone-based clinical applications. The transmitted EMG signals of ES muscles are stored in the application and used to calculate Flexion Relaxation Ratio (FRR) and Extension Relaxation Ratio (ERR). FRR and ERR values are compared before and after interventions to analyze muscle performance.

These values are used to analyze, evaluate and monitor the progression of LBP rehabilitation.


 

Novelty & Impact

  • Non-invasive & wearable device.

  • First ever quantitative assessment tool for LBP.

  • Evaluation algorithm integrated in smartphones.

  • Real-time signal processing and analysis.

  • Integrated with IoT cloud computing.


Achievement & Commercialization

  • 1 patent filed (PI2020003417)

  • 1 trade secret (UM)

  • 1 article ISI publication

  • 1 book ‘ Sakit Pinggang – Kaedah Rawatan Melalui Prinsip Pemulihan serta Postur dan Pergerakan Solat

  • 3 research grants awarded (Special Prime Minister Projects, UM Prototype grant, CIP Ignite Cradle 2022)


Awards:

  • Merit Award, 11th International Convention on Rehabilitation Engineering Assistive Technology, Thailand

  • Merit Award, IFMBE Asia-Pacific Medical Device Design, 2017

  • First prize, IEEE Final Year Project Competition 2016


Commercialization :

  • MyE has been licensed by Nonivasi Care Sdn Bhd

  • Soft launched the product on 9 June 2022.

  • Nonivasi – UM collaboration secured RM 500,000 CIP Ignite grant.


 

Team Members

Prof. Ir. Dr. Fatimah Ibrahim

(Principle Investigator)

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Anwar Suhaimi

(Dept. of Rehabilitation Medicine,

UMMC)

Prof. Dr. Jongman Cho

Dr. Aung Thiha

Mr. Karunan Joseph

Ms. Syarifah Aisyah Syed Ibrahim

Dr Nurul Fauzani


Contact Information : Center for Innovation in Medical Engineering, Universiti Malaya.

Email : cime@um.edu.my

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