Project Details
Project description 

The ICT4Rehab project addresses a new rehabilitation paradigm. Designing and building demonstrators in the domain of muscle spasticity rehabilitation as Proof-of-Concepts requires the integration of various data sources, the development of novel algorithms and putting into practice several ICT tools supporting 2D/3D user interaction. Two important aspects of clinical spasticity management are combined: (i) maintaining optimal patient motivation during her/his physical therapy, and (ii) data handling and processing of the spasticity-related clinical data. Day-to-day serious gaming exercises will be implemented in a portable system with local intelligence providing patient feedback on the execution of the game itself and ensuring clinical relevance of the physical activity performed to carry out the game. Fusion of clinical data acquired in controlled (hospital) conditions with data coming from the personalised system will be used (i) to verify the appropriateness of the gaming rehabilitation schemes and (ii) to enhance the quality and frequency of the follow-up of the patient's progress. The project's main results will directly address these two aspects: a ICT4Rehab platform that will include the developed technology and two demonstrators (a Serious Gaming demonstrator and a Clinical Analysis demonstrator). Developments will be guided by the goals of generalising the methodology to other pathologies requiring motivational sustainability and clinical analysis, and to lead to a technological platform for future developments in diverse areas.
Motion in itself and dynamic models being three dimensional, the research addresses directly the call for proposals, namely Strategic platform on 2D/3D imaging, problem 3 (3D user interaction), and guidelines 1, 2 and 3. The ICT4Rehab project will focus on a personalised portable rehabilitation system containing serious games with scalable complexity and visualisation, and on the development of a clinical analysis system allowing patient data management. The inherent 3D aspects of spasticity requires 3D image capture and generation of simple virtual environments on the personalised system's screen improved engineering and clinically relevant analysis requires detailed multimodal 3D information modelling of the patient-specific health status. Data fusion will involve solving problems related to the clinical data heterogeneity (clinical data, accelerometer and 3D camera images) and scale differences.
Muscle spasticity is an important and frequently occurring secondary disorder caused by diverse primary disorders such as cerebral palsy, head trauma, cerebrovascular accident, etc. Societal implications for the public at large are therefore important. Spasticity reduces the patient's autonomy and requests long-term physical rehabilitation. Patient motivation and patient involvement in the rehabilitation scheme is consequently a key element to lead to better clinical results. The secondary nature of spasticity requests that clinicians collect a large amount of heterogeneous data characterized by different technology and scales (e.g. 3D stereophotogrammetry and medical imaging, etc). In both cases (i.e. patient motivation and clinical data management), the field is requesting new tools such as the proposed ICT4Rehab platform to improve the current state-of-the-art.
The project aims to deliver technology that will address real-life requirements. Consequently, various classes of users (clinicians, patients and industrial stake-holders) will be involved to define users' requirements leading to specifications for the technological methodology behind the platform to be developed. In order to ensure the relevance of the clinical analysis, patient data and models generated by the project will be stored in a newly developed database structure and statistically analyzed by data mining operations.
Such ICT4Rehab platform is of high interest for several companies located in the Brussels area. The motivations of the industrial user group are diverse: to broaden current markets, profile themselves against competitors and prospect new market niches anticipated to become important in the close future.
The main differentiating factors of the ICT4Rehab project with respect to ongoing developments and competitors are:
- The advanced level of the scientific, biomechanical and clinical knowledge used for designing a novel ICT platform, called the ICT4Rehab platform, that will be used within this project to develop the project demonstrators, and which architecture will allow enlarging the project exploitation after the project life by tailoring similar applications related to other medical and clinical fields.
- The quality of the ICT4Rehab platform used for the Serious Gaming design will ensure that the latter game will show unique clinical and scientific features.
- The unique features extracted from fusion of 3D image sequences (kinematics) and accelerometers (dynamic information), and 3D medical imaging models acquired in the personalized system.
- The consortium uniting two groups, (i) one in biomechanical modelling and rehabilitation, (ii) one in multimodal and multidimensional signal processing, analysis and data fusion complemented by two other groups (iii) a database & ontology expert group (iv) and a data mining group.
- The link of the first demonstrator of the Serious Gaming demonstrator to the second Clinical Analysis demonstrator including database storage and data mining capabilities. The complementarities of the two demonstrators will ensure that ICT4Rehab will offer industrial partners several business opportunities such as addressing the clinical field with novel and scientifically validated rehabilitation tools and the opportunity to propose original tools for the organisation of clinical trials requiring reliable data management. These are two niche markets that are currently opening up.
- The underlying ICT4Rehab platform, on which the project demonstrators are based, will be available for further integration in other application domains for which stakeholders are found in the Brussels area.

Runtime: 2011 - 2014