Research Papers

Design of Semirigid Wearable Devices Based on Skin Strain Analysis

[+] Author and Article Information
J. Barrios-Muriel

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Energetics and Materials,
University of Extremadura,
Badajoz 06006, Spain
e-mail: jorgebarrios@unex.es

F. Romero Sánchez

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Energetics and Materials,
University of Extremadura,
Badajoz 06006, Spain
e-mail: fromsan@unex.es

F. J. Alonso

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Energetics and Materials,
University of Extremadura,
Badajoz 06006, Spain
e-mail: fjas@unex.es

D. R. Salgado

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Energetics and Materials,
University of Extremadura,
Badajoz 06006, Spain
e-mail: drs@unex.es

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received January 8, 2018; final manuscript received May 7, 2018; published online December 12, 2018. Assoc. Editor: James C. Iatridis.

J Biomech Eng 141(2), 021008 (Dec 12, 2018) (9 pages) Paper No: BIO-18-1012; doi: 10.1115/1.4040250 History: Received January 08, 2018; Revised May 07, 2018

Nowadays, both usability and comfort play a key role in the development of medical and wearable products. When designing any device that is in contact with the human body, the mechanical behavior of the embraced soft tissue must be known. The unavoidable displacement of the soft tissue during motion may lead to discomfort and, thus, the removal of the wearable product. This paper presents a new methodology to design and test a wearable device based on the measurement of the dynamic skin strain field. Furthermore, from this field, the anatomical lines with minimum strain (lines of nonextension (LoNEs)) are calculated to design the structural parts of the wearable device. With this new criterion, the resulting product is not only optimized to reduce the friction in skin-device interface, but fully personalized to the patient's morphology and motion. The methodology is applied to the design of an ankle-foot wearable orthosis for subjects with ankle dorsiflexors muscles weakness due to nervous system disorders. The results confirm that the use of LoNEs may benefit the design of products with a high interaction with the skin.

Copyright © 2019 by ASME
Topics: Design , Skin , Orthotics
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Fig. 1

Block diagram of the proposed methodology of design

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Fig. 2

Temporal and cameras match process used in 3D-DIC algorithm

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Fig. 3

Skin strain field (exx, eyy, and exy) and principal strain (λI and λII) in different phases of stance of human gait

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Fig. 4

(a) Conceptual representation of LoNEs with finite strain ellipse and Mohr's circle. The circle represents the initial (undeformed) shape, the ellipse the deformed shape, and the lines the principal strain directions. (b) Example of representation of interpolation LoNEs between direction of nonextension. Adapted from Ref. [34]. (c) Example of LoNEs at ankle-foot complex during human gait.

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Fig. 5

Lines of Nonextension and Principal strains directions from medial and lateral view

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Fig. 6

(a) The export of the anatomical reference of LoNEs to cad environment. (b) B-spline and grid of control points, NURBS based on B-splines of structural parts of orthosis and last, the cad model with a certain thickness to create the final orthoses model.

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Fig. 7

(a) Different views of virtual prototype of hybrid model, design of outer cover, design of inner frame, and assembly of both pieces and (b) new AFO design manufacture using 3D printing



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