Keywords

Design, Fabrication, Testing, Wrist Orthosis, Patient Comfort, Occupational Therapy, Custom

Abstract

This custom wrist orthosis project is the continuation of efforts made by students in the R.B Annis School of Engineering during the 2017-2018 academic year. Throughout this project, we have implemented the Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) methodology to guide the design process. Within the R.B. Annis School of Engineering, this methodology has been adapted into guide the DesignSpine process. We have designed a new orthosis that is custom fabricated for enhanced patient comfort. In the occupational therapy field, patients have reportedly not been wearing their prescribed orthoses/braces, which are designed to stabilize injured areas so that they heal properly. Patients have stated that these orthoses are very uncomfortable, citing that they are too hot, itchy, sweaty, and bulky. To ensure that patients continue to wear the orthoses for the prescribed amount of time, a better design is required. This undergraduate team has designed a new orthosis that is custom fabricated for enhanced patient comfort by exploring new types of materials and design solutions that can improve airflow to reduce sweating and overheating. Various types of perforation geometries on the orthosis designs offer improved airflow and in turn improved comfort. To evaluate the effectiveness of the designs generated by the team, multiple aspects are being tested. Temperature and humidity sensors placed in the orthosis will allow for comfort to be quantitatively evaluated. We will also measure how long it takes the occupational therapist to fabricate the orthosis to ensure the designs do not increase fabrication time. Change in material and design can significantly affect comfort, fabrication time, and stability. The goal is to find the best orthosis design which should be both very stable and comfortable. The new designs will be compared to the existing orthoses used in the occupational therapy field.

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(POSTER) Design and Fabrication of a Custom Wrist Orthosis for Enhanced Patient Comfort

This custom wrist orthosis project is the continuation of efforts made by students in the R.B Annis School of Engineering during the 2017-2018 academic year. Throughout this project, we have implemented the Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) methodology to guide the design process. Within the R.B. Annis School of Engineering, this methodology has been adapted into guide the DesignSpine process. We have designed a new orthosis that is custom fabricated for enhanced patient comfort. In the occupational therapy field, patients have reportedly not been wearing their prescribed orthoses/braces, which are designed to stabilize injured areas so that they heal properly. Patients have stated that these orthoses are very uncomfortable, citing that they are too hot, itchy, sweaty, and bulky. To ensure that patients continue to wear the orthoses for the prescribed amount of time, a better design is required. This undergraduate team has designed a new orthosis that is custom fabricated for enhanced patient comfort by exploring new types of materials and design solutions that can improve airflow to reduce sweating and overheating. Various types of perforation geometries on the orthosis designs offer improved airflow and in turn improved comfort. To evaluate the effectiveness of the designs generated by the team, multiple aspects are being tested. Temperature and humidity sensors placed in the orthosis will allow for comfort to be quantitatively evaluated. We will also measure how long it takes the occupational therapist to fabricate the orthosis to ensure the designs do not increase fabrication time. Change in material and design can significantly affect comfort, fabrication time, and stability. The goal is to find the best orthosis design which should be both very stable and comfortable. The new designs will be compared to the existing orthoses used in the occupational therapy field.