Restoring activities of daily living using an EEG/EOG-controlled semiautonomous and mobile whole-arm exoskeleton in chronic stroke

Marius Nann, Francesca Cordella, Emilio Trigili, Clemente Lauretti, Marco Bravi, Sandra Miccinilli, Jose M. Catalan, Francisco J. Badesa, Simona Crea, Federica Bressi, Nicolas Garcia-Aracil, Nicola Vitiello, Loredana Zollo, Surjo R. Soekadar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Stroke survivors with chronic paralysis often have difficulties to perform various activities of daily living (ADLs), such as preparing a meal or eating and drinking independently. Recently, it was shown that a brain/neural hand exoskeleton can restore hand and finger function, but many stroke survivors suffer from motor deficits affecting their whole upper limb. Therefore, novel hybrid electroencephalography/electrooculography (EEG/EOG)based brain/neural control paradigms were developed for guiding a whole-arm exoskeleton. It was unclear, however, whether hemiplegic stroke survivors are able to reliably use such brain/neural-controlled device. Here, we tested feasibility, safety, and user-friendliness of EEG/EOG-based brain/neural robotic control across five hemiplegic stroke survivors engaging in a drinking task that consisted of several subtasks (e.g., reaching, grasping, manipulating, and drinking). Reliability was assumed when at least 75% of subtasks were initialized within 3 s. Fluent control was assumed if average “time to initialize” each subtask ranged below 3 s. System's safety and user-friendliness were rated using Likert-scales. All chronic stroke patients were able to operate the system reliably and fluently. No undesired side effects were reported. Four participants rated the system as very user-friendly. These results show that chronic stroke survivors are capable of using an EEG/EOG-controlled semiautonomous whole-arm exoskeleton restoring ADLs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9199380
JournalIEEE Systems Journal
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


  • Activities of daily living (ADL)
  • Brain-computer interface (BCI)
  • Brain-machine interface (BMI)
  • Chronic stroke
  • Electroencephalography (EEG)
  • Electrooculography (EOG)
  • Exoskeletons
  • Hemiparesis
  • Rehabilitation robotics
  • Sensorimotor rhythms
  • Shared control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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