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Research on Biomedical Engineering

versión impresa ISSN 2446-4732versión On-line ISSN 2446-4740


SILVEIRA, Alisson Thiago; SOUZA, Mauren Abreu de; FERNANDES, Beatriz Luci  y  NOHAMA, Percy. From the past to the future of therapeutic orthoses for upper limbs rehabilitation. Res. Biomed. Eng. [online]. 2018, vol.34, n.4, pp.368-380. ISSN 2446-4740.


The expansion of assistive technologies has been increasing significantly, involving almost all the daily activities, performed by disabled people. One of the highlights to be mentioned is the robotic orthoses, which are being used to amplify movements, to replace amputated limbs, and for a variety of rehabilitation therapies, among others. This study aims to present a review about upper limbs’ orthoses, discussing their weaknesses, potentialities, and pointing out for future perspectives under the motor rehabilitation.


For this research, it had been identified 161 papers, based on the bibliographic bases from IEEE and Science Direct, which were filtered by the keywords orthoses, hand, upper-limbs and technology. After the appropriate exclusions, 22 papers were analyzed.


This review indicates that most of the orthoses have been developed for rehabilitation therapies to be employed by people who have suffered stroke, cerebral palsy or spinal cord injury. This research summarized that the upper limbs movements are effectively produced by electric or pneumatic actuators, having a variety of degrees of freedom.


This review has shown that, although there are many orthoses styles, ranging from electric to pneumatic actuators; also there are some technical restrictions that prevent their use by most people. However, upper limb orthoses seem to be a great solution for the rehabilitation of people who have suffered a stroke.

Palabras clave : Orthosis; Upper-limbs; Functional rehabilitation; Therapeutic device.

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