Design of a Hand Orthosis for People with Deficiency of the Medial, Radial, and Ulnar Nerves

John A. Morales, William A. Rodriguez, Leonardo A. Bermeo Varon, Diana M. Quiguanas, Edgar F. Arcos, John J. Villarejo Mayor


The reduced mobility in hand is a problem that prevents daily activities such as feeding, bathing, brushing, dressing, grabbing objects, and losing autonomy in everyday situations. The hand disability is mainly due to the deficiency of the ulnar, medial, and radial nerves, which prevents adequate hand movements. In consequence, various assistive technologies are proposed to assist mobility, communication, self-help, and domestic activities. An alternative is the use of active orthosis, which by this proof of concept, the person can perform adequate hand movements. This paper aims to introduce a 3D active orthosis of PLA Plus designed by the Creative Lab in the Universidad Santiago de Cali, which includes an actuator and a low-cost myoelectric signal acquisition system, with two input channels. Finger flexion/extension movements and resting-state were performed. The user’s intention is decoded processing rectified and integrated myoelectric signals. An on-off control algorithm was implemented to generate commands that control orthosis movements. The system is controlled by a person who has a disability due to a C5 and C6 spinal trauma that generated muscular atrophy in the distal level of the hand. Results showed the controlled flexion and extension of the fingers with a good performance. This system assists people with disabilities in the ulnar, medial, and radial nerves to make proper hand movements. The design of the above-mentioned orthosis allows individuals to carry out daily living activities to improve their quality of life.


Electromyography; active orthosis; assistance; decreased mobility; hand orthosis

Full Text:



Wordl Health Organization website.[online]. Available:

MinSalud, “Registro para la Localización y Caracterización de personas con Discapacidad,†Ministerio de salud y protección social, Bogotá, Cuninamarca, RLCPD, 2013.

C. Quinayas and C. Gaviria “Sistema de identificación de intención de movimiento para el control mioeléctrico de una prótesis de mano robótica,†Ingeniería y Universidad: Engineering for development, vol. 19,pp. 27-50, Jun, 2015

M. Rojas, M. García, J. F. Alonso, J. Marín, M. A, and Mañanas, “Evaluación de la Función Neuromuscular del Antebrazo durante contracciones isométricas mediante Electromiografía de Superficie Multicanal,†Revista Iberoamericana de Automática e Informática Industrial RIAI, vol. 8, pp. 35-44, April 2011.

R, A. Blanco, A. M. C. Bernal, and M. P. Torres, “Design of a fuzzy logic system for muscular activity recognition using superficial EMG signals,†International Journal of Innovation and Applied Studies , vol. 19, pp. 729-737, March 2017.

Rehab-robotics website. [online], Available:

E. Dorenfeld, R. Wolf , and S. Zeveska, “Design of a Powered Hand Orthosis,†Worcester Polechnic Institute, 2013.

A. A. Portnova, G. Mukherjee, K. M. Peters, Y. Ann, and K. M. Steele, “Design of a 3D-printed, open-source wrist-driven orthosis for individuals with spinal cord injury,â€. PLOS ONE, vol. 13, pp. 1-18, 2018.

G. Rosati, S. Cenci, G. Boschetti, D. Zanotto, and S. Masiero, “Design of a single-dof active hand orthosis for neurorehabilitation,†in Proc: IEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, ICORR, 2009. pp 161–166.

R. Bos, K. Nizamis, D. Plettenburg, and J. Herder,â€Design of an Electrohydraulic Hand Orthosis for People with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Using Commercially Available Components,†in Proc: BIOROB, 2018, pp 305–311.

S. Fardipour, M. Bahramizadeh, M. Arazpour, A. Jafarpishieh, and M. Azimian, “First prototype of EMG-controlled power hand orthosis for restoring hand extension in stroke patients,†Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine, vol. 232, pp. 1-6. Oct. 2018.

I. B. Abdallah, Y. Bouteraa, and C. Rekik, “Design and development of 3d printed myoelectric robotic exoskeleton for hand rehabilitation,†International Journal on Smart Sensing and Intelligent Systems, vol. 10, pp. 341–366. Jun. 2017.

N. Secciani, M. Bianchi, E. Meli, Y. Volpe, and A. Ridolfi, “A novel application of a surface ElectroMyoGraphy-based control strategy for a hand exoskeleton system: A single-case study,†International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, vol. 16, pp. 1-13 . Feb. 2019.

O. Sandoval, J. Villegas, I. Herrera, O. Portillo, P. Tripicchio, M. Hernandez, F. Flores, and C. Avizzano, “Design and Development of a Hand Exoskeleton Robot for Active and Passive Rehabilitation,†International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, vol. 13(2), pp. 66. May 2017.

A. Rahmatillah, L. Salamat, amd S. Soelistiono, “Design and Implementation of Prosthetic Hand Control Using Myoelectric Signal,†International Journal on Advanced Science, Engineering and Information Technology, vol 9, pp. 1231–1237, 2019.

R. Viladot, O. C. Riambau, S. C. Paloma, Ortesis y prótesis del aparato locomotor. 3rd ed. Ed Elsevier, España, 1998.

(2019) Advancer Technologies website.[online]. Avialable:

L. A. Bermeo, E. F. Arcos, D. M. Quiguanas, J. J. Villarejo, A. Bravo, and P. Perez,, “Acquisition protocol and comparison of myoelectric signals of the muscles innervated by the ulnar, radial and medial nerves for a hand orthoses,†Communications in Computer and Information Science. In press, 2019.

B. Le Veau, Biomecánica del movimiento humano. Williams y Lissner, Ed Trillas, Mexico, 1991.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Published by INSIGHT - Indonesian Society for Knowledge and Human Development