Development of Low Cost, Reconfigurable Robots for Neurorehabilitation


A presentation on the application of robotic devices to functional aids in stroke rehabilitation.

Approximately 15 million people suffer a stroke each year and 70% of strokes occur in low and middle income countries where healthcare infrastructure and clinical resources are inadequate. Robotic devices can improve functional outcomes, increase access to and length of therapy, and maximize resources in a variety of rehabilitation environments. Meta-analyses and clinical trials show that rehabilitation outcomes with robots are comparable to standard and intensity-matched stroke rehabilitation and significantly improve functional outcomes in terms of motor control with low to modest improvements in ADL function. However, high costs limit access to robotic devices, relegating them to urban and large hospitals and rehabilitation centers making them less available to settings such as nursing homes, remote, rural, community-based healthcare facilities, or public rehabilitation clinics. A method to overcome such limitations could be to implement a modular and reconfigurable approach in the design of these systems, maintaining at the same time, a low-cost, high performance and a large versatility to multiple working conditions and scenarios. This talk will present an overview of the rehabilitation robotics field and highlight our efforts towards developing affordable and re-configurable robot systems for neurorehabiliation.

  Date and Time




  • Date: 27 May 2021
  • Time: 05:00 PM to 06:00 PM
  • All times are Canada/Mountain
  • Add_To_Calendar_icon Add Event to Calendar

IEEE Vtools

  • Calgary, Alberta
  • Canada

  • Starts 04 May 2021 03:32 PM
  • Ends 27 May 2021 06:00 PM
  • All times are Canada/Mountain
  • No Admission Charge


Dr.  Michelle Johnson

Dr. Michelle Johnson of University of Pennsylvania

Michelle J. Johnson, Ph.D., is currently Associate professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Pennsylvania. She has a secondary appointment as an Associate professor in Bioengineering and is a member of the Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics graduate group. She has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics from the University of Pennsylvania and a PhD in Mechanical Engineering, with an emphasis in mechatronics, robotics, and design, from Stanford University. She completed a NSF-NATO post-doctoral fellowship at the Advanced Robotics Technology and Systems Laboratory at the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna in Italy. She directs the Rehabilitation Robotic Research and Design Laboratory located at the Pennsylvania Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine. The lab is also affiliated with the General Robotics Automation Sensing Perception (GRASP) Lab. Dr. Johnson’s lab specializes in the design, development, and therapeutic use of novel, affordable, intelligent robotic assistants for rehabilitation in high and low-resource environments with an emphasis on using robotics and sensors to quantify upper limb motor function in adults and children with brain injury or at risk for brain injury. Dr. Johnson has spent over twenty years applying technology solutions to aid in the understanding of disability and impairment after brain injury. She is currently a Fulbright Scholar for 2020-2022 to Botswana and an IEEE Engineering in Biology and Medicine Society Distinguished Lecturer 2021-2022.