Research Grant 2021-2022

  Research Topic:Development of a Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) unit for paraplegic patients due to external injury.

Md Saiful Islam

F.M. Tanvir Hasan Raian

Problem Statement:
As paraplegia causes loss of voluntary movements, the paraplegic patient is hence treated with FES as a part of a comprehensive treatment plan including medication, physiotherapy etc. FES has been reported as an effective technique for reducing pain, improvement in functions and movement. The FES will retrain the dorsiflexion by stimulation the deep peroneal nerve through electrodes usually placed on the front of the shin and on the side of the calf muscle. There are several scientific reports that indicate FES as a useful treatment modality to strengthen neuromuscular system by retraining in order to improve functional ability following a neurological injury. The scope of this study will mainly focusing on paraplegia, a spinal cord injury that causes the lower body extremity impairment; however, FES can be used to mobilize upper body movement as well. In recent days, the technology driven treatments have become inseparable part of our total healthcare system and as a part of continuous development process new technologies are going to be introduced to enhance traditional treatment and therapies in our country. Such an emerging technology is FES, which is based on simple principle, hardware system and execution. FES can serve a huge number of patients suffering from stroke, spinal cord injury from accident or military services, and other diseases related to CNS; e.g. multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, honeymoon palsy etc. FES uses low-energy electrical impulses to trigger nerve and/or muscle cells that causes limbs to move. It is a non-invasive treatment or therapy; hence, does not cause any pain. However, this may result is some tingling sensation on the skin surface of the patient. The electrodes (e.g. patch electrodes) can be placed anywhere to retrain neuromuscular system as required.
Fund Allotted:8,00,000.00
Expected Objectives:
To develop a simple FES therapeutic device with minimalistic approach for paraplegic patients (neuromuscular disorder/impairment in lower limbs) due to external injury (e.g. spinal cord injury etc.) or other health conditions (e.g. stroke etc.).
Duration:01 year
Expected Expected Research Outcome:
The important research outcomes can be outlines as follow:
1. The development of the functional prototype.
     a. Can be used as a pilot model to further develop with more functionality.
    b. Closed-loop feedback system can be used for multiple project in future.
    c. Can be used as a Lab experiment module for the Biomechanics and rehabilitation Lab.
    d. Medical and Military application.
2. Parts of this project can be assigned as final year student project/ thesis etc.
3. Scientific publication.
4. Possible collaboration with other departments, hospitals, research labs etc.