Review on Design and Control Aspects of Robotic Shoulder Rehabilitation Orthoses

Aibek S. Niyetkaliyev, Shahid HUSSAIN, Mergen H. Ghayesh, Gursel Alici

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)


Robotic rehabilitation devices are more frequently used for the physical therapy of people with upper limb weakness, which is the most common type of stroke-induced disability. Rehabilitation robots can provide customized, prolonged, intensive, and repetitive training sessions for patients with neurological impairments. In most cases, the robotic exoskeletons have to be aligned with the human joints and provide natural arm movements. This is a challenging task to achieve for one of the most biomechanically complex joints of human body, i.e., the shoulder. Therefore, specific considerations have been made in the development of various existing robotic shoulder rehabilitation orthoses. Different types of actuation, degrees of freedom (DOFs), and control strategies have been utilized for the development of these shoulder rehabilitation orthoses. This paper presents a comprehensive review of these shoulder rehabilitation orthoses. Recent advancements in the mechanism design, their advantages and disadvantages, overview of hardware, actuation system, and power transmission are discussed in detail with the emphasis on the assisted DOFs for shoulder motion. A brief overview of control techniques and clinical studies conducted with the developed robotic shoulder orthoses is also presented. Finally, current challenges and directions of future development for robotic shoulder rehabilitation orthoses are provided at the end of this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7932920
Pages (from-to)1134-1145
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Human-Machine Systems
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes


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