Limits, Cautions When Using NuroSleeve to Restore Arm Function: Joe Kardine, MS, OTR, CBIS


The clinical program manager at the Jefferson Center for Neurorestoration discussed certain scenarios in which the NuroSleeve system may not be applicable for patients with neurological disorders. [WATCH TIME: 3 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 3 minutes

"The goal and design of this trial was about function, not necessarily about specific clinical aims, as well as its therapeutic aim. Occupational or physical therapists can deploy this trial with a patient, and the goal is always function. It’s all about what the patient wants to gain from it."

In recent years, the use of portable powered braces and functional electrical stimulation has revolutionized the way clinicians view neurorestoration and their capabilities in treating patients who develop arm weakness. Led by researchers at Thomas Jefferson University, a new ongoing study is evaluating the use of the NuroSleeve robotic system to see if children and adults with chronic, stable neurological motor impairment can achieve voluntary control over the machine, and thus perform functionally beneficial tasks to enhance independence, mental and physical health.

While myoelectric prostheses have been studied for decades in children with limb loss, the investigators, which include Joe Kardine, MS, OTR, CBIS, believed it was necessary to gather pilot data on the use of orthoses with optional electrical stimulation in those with intact yet paralyzed limbs. Each participant in the trial will receive a customized NuroSleeve and undergo 8 weeks of occupational therapy, with change in Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) score as the primary outcome measure.

The trial does not have many limitations in terms of who can participate. Across the cohort, there are patients with hemiparesis, quadriplegia, muscular dystrophies, spinal cord injuries, stroke, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), among others. To learn more about the limitations of NuroSleeve, NeurologyLive® caught up with Kardine, the clinical program manager at the Jefferson Center for Neurorestoration. He provided insight on the clinical application of the tool, and the certain situations in which a patient may not be suitable for treatment.

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