Assistive Spoon

Assistive Spoon

Illustrative project image
Approved by mentor

Medical tags

Clinical need
Support to medical practice
E-based technology
Project keywords
Parkinson's disease, assist device, tremors, stabilization
Device classification

Project description

Eating is a day-to-day activity, which in the case of those who suffer symptoms of involuntary hand tremors can become a difficult and stressful situation.

The most common cause underlying these uncontrolled movements or tremors in the hands is Parkinson's disease, the second most common neurodegenerative disease characterized by a progressive loss of neurons that results in motor manifestations such as muscle rigidity, tremors and slow movements. However, they can also be related to other diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis or Alzheimer's or to the taking of medication, disorders of the brain or nerve, brain tumour, hyperthyroidism, stroke, etc.

It is a challenging project to try to improve the quality of life of these patients by providing them with greater autonomy and confidence and will take the team into fields such as movement control, physics and 3D mathematics.

In essence, the design is based on incorporating sensors in the handle of the cutlery that detect unconscious tremor, distinguishing it from intentional hand motion, and stabilizing it automatically by means of active tremor cancellation technology that moves the utensil in the opposite direction to the detected tremor.

This assistive device is adapted to the general hands use habit and the typology of the hand, easy to hold and to prevent from slippery. Furthermore, the aim of this project is to develop a comfortable and safe prototype made from medical grade materials, with an automatic mode of use and suitable size, including the design of different utensil attachments for various food, easy to change and clean.