WHAT IS IT?
Variable Assist is a new feature which allows clinicians to augment their patients’ strength and provides the ability to strategically target deficient aspects of their gait. This means weak patients can now get up in a stable environment sooner, while helping them achieve optimal gait patterns and high step dosage. It engages patients by challenging their abilities; balancing the physical effort they exert with the amount of help they need to achieve a more normalized gait.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Variable Assist works by allowing individuals with any amount of lower extremity strength to contribute their own power -- from either leg -- to achieve walking over ground. Based on the therapeutic goals, therapists now have the option to assign a specific amount of power contribution to augment their patients’ efforts, or to allow the Ekso suit to dynamically adjust to their needs in real-time
HOW IS IT USED?
Now clinicians can provide therapy to a wider range of clinical presentations including hemiparesis, and to explore the effects of various interventions by tuning the power contribution to either leg. For example, the therapist may assign a higher power contribution to produce a quality gait, or less power contribution to challenge the patient’s walking efforts. This encourages patients to actively contribute to their recovery process and can challenge them with progressive rehabilitation.
Bilateral Max Assist
Using Bilateral Max Assist, the Ekso suit provides full power to both legs. No strength is required from the patient: only proper balance and weight shifts are required to achieve walking.
When working in Adaptive Assist, patients with any amount of lower extremity strength contribute what they can to their walking efforts. Ekso dynamically adjusts to produce a smooth, consistent gait. Feedback is provided to the therapist about the amount of power needed from Ekso for patients to complete each step in a specified amount of time.
Using Fixed Assist, either leg of the Ekso contributes a fixed amount of power (levels 0-100) to help patients complete steps in a specified amount of time. Values are established using information gained while walking in Adaptive Assist and assigned by the therapist, allowing the clinician to explore the impact of various interventions on rehabilitation goals.