There is currently a need for a device to allow researchers at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging to better understand the brain activity related to improving motor functions in stroke patients. In previous experiments they have been comparing brain functions of healthy subjects to those of stroke patients during MRI and MEG scans while the subjects have been performing a series of hand motor functions. These experiments have been helping them to understand how the kinematics of motor task performance affects brain activity. Our capstone design project involved the design of an MRI and MEG compatible hand tracking device that will be used by both stroke patient groups and healthy patient groups. It will fulfill a current need for a study involving stroke patients during which directed hand grip strength will be observed during both MRI and MEG brain scans. Our design includes pressure sensors enclosed within a PVC cylinder that will be held by a patient's hand and will track directed hand activities. It also features control software for the hand tracking device which collects data from the device while also time synchronizing our device data with data from the MRI and MEG devices. In addition, it includes a software interface that will direct the patient. An important part of our software design focused on is its ability to compare both the measurements of healthy patients to those of stroke patients and also its ability to compare previous measurements of the same stroke patient to future measurements. This will allow researchers to gather a large amount of data not only on how stroke patient's motor functions compare to healthy patients, but also on how the brain of a particular stroke patient is changing and improving after their stroke.
Biomedical imaging, Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), Magnetoencephalography (MEG), brain scan
Krejci, Eric; Pinkus, Ben; Trinque, Jason; Karamian, Oshin; Michaud, John; Kamali, Arian; and Bohn, Paul, "MRI/MEG Compatible Grip Force Dynamometer for Stroke Patients" (2007). Capstone Design Program: Electrical and Computer Engineering. Paper 8. http://hdl.handle.net/2047/d20000834
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