This paper introduces a smart nine-hole peg tester (s-9HPT), which comprises a standard nine-hole peg test pegboard, but with light-emitting diodes (LEDs) next to each hole. The s-9HPT still supports the traditional nine-hole peg test operating mode, in which the order of the peg placement and removal can be freely chosen. Considering this, the s-9HPT was used in lab research to analyze the traditional procedure and possible new procedures. As this analysis required subjects with similar levels of dexterity, measurement data from 16 healthy subjects (seven females, nine males, 25-80 years old) were used. We consequently found that illuminating the LEDs in various patterns facilitated guided tests of diverse complexity levels. Next, to demonstrate the clinical application of the s-9HPT, the improvement in the hand dexterity of 12 hospitalized stroke patients (45-80 years old, six females and six males) was monitored during their rehabilitation. Here, we used traditional and guided tests validated by healthy subjects. Consequently, improvements were found to be patient specific. At the beginning of rehabilitation, traditional tests suitably indicate improvements, while guided tests are beneficial following improvements in motor functions. Further, the guided tests motivated certain patients, meaning the rehabilitation was more effective for these individuals.
Jobbágy, Á., Marik, A. R., & Fazekas, G. (2018). Quantification of the upper extremity motor functions of stroke patients using a smart nine-hole peg tester. Journal of Healthcare Engineering, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/7425858