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To evaluate the usability of a mobile platform based on electromyography (EMG)-guided neurofeedback, called MyoPanda, for wrist extension training in individuals with stroke.
A before-after trial.
A public hospital in China.
Eight individuals with stroke and measurable EMG activity in the muscle extensor carpi radialis of the affected arm were recruited (age range 32 – 68 years, 8 males, days post-stroke range 31 – 145, baseline Fugl-Meyer Assessment of the Upper Extremity [FMA-UE] score range 8 – 53).
Participants performed ten sessions of EMG-guided neurofeedback training for wrist extension using MyoPanda over the course of two weeks. A complete training session (40 – 50 minutes) consisted of EMG calibration, stability, and dynamic tasks. All participants continued with their usual care.
Main Outcome Measures
The primary outcome measures were the System Usability Scale (SUS) and a customized questionnaire on the willingness to use MyoPanda at home (5-Point Likert Scale).
Eight participants had a median SUS score of 82.5 (Excellent) and they were willing to continue the training at home. However, many patients reported the need for support to use the system, and the need for someone to help with placing the armband on the forearm and the operation of the tablet.
MyoPanda is a potentially promising tool for training wrist extension, even in very weak patients. Based on the results, using the current setup in clinical settings for stroke rehabilitation with assistance from therapists/caregivers is feasible. While patients were generally positive about their experience with MyoPanda, many indicated they were reluctant to use the armband and software application independently. Reasons for this need to be further explored before testing is extended to the home setting.
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