Characterization of the joint torque coupling strategies used in the lower extremity to generate maximal and submaximal levels of torque at either the hip, knee, or ankle is lacking. Currently, there are no available isometric devices that quantify all concurrent joint torques in the hip, knee, and ankle of a single leg during maximum voluntary torque generation. Thus, joint-torque coupling strategies in the hip, knee, and concurrent torques at ankle and/or coupling patterns at the hip and knee driven by the ankle have yet to be quantified. This manuscript describes the design, implementation, and validation of a multiple degree of freedom, lower extremity isometric device (the MultiLEIT) that accurately quantifies simultaneous torques at the hip, knee, and ankle. The system was mechanically validated and then implemented with two healthy control individuals and two post-stroke individuals to test usability and patient acceptance. Data indicated different joint torque coupling strategies used by both healthy individuals. In contrast, data showed the same torque coupling patterns in both post-stroke individuals, comparable to those described in the clinic. Successful implementation of the MultiLEIT can contribute to the understanding of the underlying mechanisms responsible for abnormal movement patterns and aid in the design of therapeutic interventions.
N. Sánchez, A. M. Acosta, A. H. A. Stienen and J. P. A. Dewald, "A Multiple Degree of Freedom Lower Extremity Isometric Device to Simultaneously Quantify Hip, Knee, and Ankle Torques," in IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, vol. 23, no. 5, pp. 765-775, Sept. 2015, https://doi.org/10.1109/TNSRE.2014.2348801.
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