Approximately 100M people worldwide need prosthetic and orthotic (P&O) devices (WHO World Report on Disability, 2011). Low-cost, robust devices are only half the story; an estimated 80-90% do not have access to P&O services “due to a shortage of personnel, service units and health rehabilitation infrastructures” (Sexton, 2016, ISPO). All three barriers could be addressed by data, and our LMIC limbs project aims to develop new data technologies which can improve access to P&O services.
The project, funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council is led by Dr Alex Dickinson at the University of Southampton, with clinical teams at the Department of Prosthetics and Orthotics of the National Institute of Social Affairs (Cambodia) and members of Exceed Worldwide. Salford’s role in the project has focused on the use of wearable sensors to capture data on the free-living behaviours of amputees. We have reviewed the techniques used in this area and are working with the teams in Southampton and Cambodia on developing novel approaches which can capture useful data on behaviours, unobtrusively, and over extended periods. The project complements ongoing work in Salford’s Centre for Doctoral Training in Prosthetics and Orthotics.
You can keep up to date with the latest developments in this project via our project website, LMIC limbs project.