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  • Co-adaptive support of trunk and head in relation to arm movements

    Co-adaptive support of trunk and head in relation to arm movements

    Patients with hypotonic paresis like in persons with neuromuscular disorders most often have instability of the trunk and head leading to balance problems while sitting or standing. In addition, patients with a hypertonic paresis like cerebral paresis often also have weakness in the trunk.

    Involvement of trunk muscles in such disorders and progression over time varies widely between, disorders and individuals. Scoliosis, asymmetric contractures around the pelvis, and luxation of the hips are often present and negatively affect trunk posture. Control of trunk posture is essential for control of the arm and head and consequently for visual control, respiration and to avoid swallowing problems, but especially for function of the hand/arm function.

    The aim of this project:

    The aim of the project is to realize a co-adaptive trunk and head support (fixed to the body and/or as a in combination with the wheelchair with a sitting device depending on the functional capacities of a person) that stabilizes trunk and head postures while allowing the user to choose postures that support optimal performance of hand/arm activities.


    J.M. (Imelda)  de Groot, associate professor, rehabilitation physician, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre


    Research groups:
    Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre
    – Rehabilitation: dr. I.J.M. de Groot and dr. E.C. Cup

    University of Twente
    – Biomechanical Engineering: prof.dr.ir. G.J. Verkerke, prof.dr.ir. H.F.J.M. Koopman and ir. E.E.G. Hekman

    VU University Amsterdam
    – Human Movement Sciences: prof. dr. J van Dieën
    – Physics & Medical Technology: M.I. Paalman
    – Orthopaedics: drs. M.M.E.H. Witbreuk and drs. A. Stadhouder

    Maastricht University Medical Centre
    – Human Movement Sciences: dr. K. Meijer


    – Foundation to Eradicate Duchenne (USA)

    – Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (USA)

    – Duchenne Parent Project

    – Focal Meditech BV

    – Baat Medical

    – People with neuromuscular disorders

    – Spierziekten Nederland

    – Dwarslaesie Organisatie

    – Intespring BV

    – Hankamp Rehab

    – FSHD Foundation


    This project is IMDI-SPRINT related and part of the symbionics program, that was initiated by the Flextension Foundation, for more information visit the website: www.flextension.nl

    Patient organization and co-funding

    – Spierziekten Nederland

    – Duchenne Parent Project

    – FED

    – FSHD stichting