Juliana Pitzer – Independent Project

Juliana Pitzer – Independent Project

Class of 2017

Introduction to Topic

Introduction

The human body has many different systems that work together, each with specific components that allow us to function well. Problems arise, when these systems and components start to fail or injuries occur. Our bodies are made in such a way that everything is interconnected and if one part starts hurting, it could be from weakness in a completely different part of the body. Due to these connections, and inevitable injuries, we need a way to take care of our bodies so they can work properly. Physical therapy was created for just this purpose. This field is meant to  help patients manage and prevent further injuries (Physical Therapist- Overview, 2016).

Project Description

After careful thought, the product that would be most beneficial in the Physical Therapy field is a wireless stimulation machine. The stimulation machine itself will be a handheld device that could be transported around the room. The machine would have all the basic functions of a regular stimulation machine, but will have Bluetooth and Wifi technology in order to connect to the stimulation pads from across the room. The pads will be equipped with fourteen small, 110mAh lithium batteries in order to produce the necessary amount of voltages (Sabatini, 2011). This, along with the Bluetooth, and Wifi connector on the pads, will allow communication between the patient and physical therapist from across the room. When the stimulation process is complete, pads will be stored on the cleaning tray. This tray will have Spectra 360 Electrode Gel and Benzethonium Chloride mixture that will clean the pads when placed on it for the next patient to use (Northwest Essentials, Inc., 2017).

Experience Description

My shadowing experience was done at Agape Physical Therapy. I began volunteering at this location last year May. As a volunteer, I was expected to be able to do a number of tasks. These tasks included learning all the physical therapy exercises the office does, learning the short hand the aids use, and figuring out where everything in the room goes. In order for me to be successful volunteering at this physical therapy place, I had to relearn all the scientific words for  certain body movements, learn the aid shorthand, and memorize and understand all the exercises the patients do, to be able to correctly identify and explain them to a patient.

During my time volunteering I came in contact with a variety of different disabilities. Seeing the different ways, the therapist would deal with each patient, learn about their disability, and become a part of each patient’s life was truly amazing.

Although physical therapy can be very repetitive, when unique patient’s come in, it’s exciting. On one of the slow days, an interesting couple came in. The wife was rolled in, in a wheelchair. The therapist, Kathy, had to give her full attention to the patient. The patient had Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, or CIDP for short. When I asked the therapist what exactly CIDP was, she said it is a neurological disorder that causes the progressive weakness and impairment of sensory functions in a person’s legs and arms. Kathy explained it that the patient was bitten by a deer tick without even knowing and developed Lyme’s disease. Sometimes you just can’t tell or know that you have it, and hers progressed so far that  at this point she developed CIDP.  I didn’t truly understand what that meant until I talked to the patient herself. She explained it as not knowing where her own limbs were in space. Normally a sitting person can judge just about where their feet are, and possibly touch it without even looking. A person with CIDP can’t tell where their own feet or arms are unless they are looking directly at it. Because there is no curing this disorder they can only work with what they got. The exercises that the therapist made the patient do was mostly dealing with trying to do everyday tasks like standing up and balancing to build endurance.

The main goal was to get the wife out of the wheelchair and try to control where her feet were. In order for her to do this, the patient’s legs had to get stronger. For this to happen Kathy  tied a belt around the patient’s waist. This belt allowed the therapist to have a good place to grab and support the patient with. The bed was lowered down so that it was knee level, Kathy sat in front, and the patient was asked to stand for as long as she could at the end of the bed. When the patient was ready she would stand up for as long as she could before her legs gave out. They did this a total of 3 times with a lot of time in between for breaks because each session took a lot out of her. The most she could do in the end was 57 seconds. After a recovery period the therapist wanted to try something new to push her even more and see just how much she can do. The therapist set up the blocks below in a step like formation leading up to the biodex. The biodex tilts in different ways and is supposed to help measure balance. We got a walker out and put in above the steps and tried to help her make her way up . I was holding the walker in place for the patient to hold onto, the therapist was holding the belt and supporting the patient upright, while her husband was behind her with the wheelchair just in case. The problem was she couldn’t step up or down without looking at where her feet where and it took a lot out of her. In the end she couldn’t make it past the second step and we had to stop.

Throughout my experience, I was able to shadow many different PT’s and PTA’s that allowed me to appreciate just how important the physical therapy field is. I was able to see the progress and relationships built with every patient, and just how great of an impact physical therapy has on an individual. This field makes those who have undergone a tragic event be able to recover and be able to do tasks they previously couldn’t do, all while developing personal relationships with all of them.

Innovation Description

I thought of my innovation idea through my shadowing experience. Part of my job requirement was being able to set up each patient on stimulation, on any part of the body. This meant I had to learn how to setup stimulation in general, then memorize the different ways to set it up depending on the part of the body.

A standard stimulation machine is a machine, usual placed on a cart, with two channels. Each channel has two break off points. These break off points are where the patient’s pads are attached. The most common type of setup I had to do was in inferential one. Depending on what the therapist wanted for the patient however, I needed to know premod as well as Russian. Inferential is when the same channels have to cross. I would set this is up by having the same channel with the two pads on this channel setup so that they are diagonal from one another, with the second channel doing the same thing in the same area. This meant I was setting up the pads so that they formed an X shape. Premod is set up so that two different parts of the body can be set up on stimulation at the same time. So one channel is used on one part of the body while the other channel is used for another. Finally, Russian is set up with channel one. One pad is placed on the thigh, and the other is placed in the inside of the thigh, right above the knee (Hoadley, 2016).

Depending on where the stim pads need to be set up, it became extremely frustrating when the pads would be set up, ready to go, but then the patient would move in order to get comfortable and one of the wires pop out, or the wire is tugged and the stim pad moves out of place. This is extremely frustrating when the pads are set up underneath the patient’s clothes, or underneath the game ready, which is a material that wraps around the injured area and expands and becomes cold. The game ready in itself takes 5 minutes to set up, so when a stimulation pad wire detaches underneath, this is very frustrating. When this happens, I have to unhook the game ready, or remove the heat or ice, then reattach the wires. Another issue that arises with stimulation machines is the fact that on physical therapist are allowed to turn them on. Due to this, I must interrupt the physical therapist, who has to leave their current patient, and turn on the machine for the other patient. This wastes time and impolite for the patient they leave.

Due to these two problems, my innovation are wireless stim pads with one central unit. How this works is the stimulation pads will be made so that they can conduct the same energy the regular stim unit does without the wires. The stimulation pads will have 14 mini lithium ion batteries attached to the top of the pads, a speaker with Bluetooth connection, and a wifi connector. These will correspond with the handheld machine that can be transported around the office. Each lithium battery can conduct about 5 volts of energy with a peak of 110mA. This is a perfect match to power a stimulation machine that needs a peak of 110 mA and 50 volts (Electrical Stimulation, 2017). The handheld device will also have a speaker with Bluetooth connection and wifi. The Bluetooth that will be incorporated into the device would be a class 1 Bluetooth that is able to work 100 meters, or 328 feet away (Sans Technology Institute , 2017). This will allow the patient and therapist to talk to each other from across the clinic and set stimulation up correctly. The handheld machine will have all the basic options as the regular stimulation machine, but this one device will be able to control multiple units. This means that with the one machine, therapists are able to turn on multiple patient stimulations from wherever they are in the clinic. The Bluetooth transmitter can handle up to 8 device at one time, which is perfect in the office where only 5 are usually  needed (Woodford, 2016).  

In the office, each patient has their own set of pads. In order to compensate for this, I have also created a self-cleaning tray. This tray will allow aids like myself to place the pads on the tray when the patient’s stimulation is complete. This tray will have a thin layer of Spectra 360 Electrode Gel and Benzethonium Chloride mixture that will sterilize the pads for the next patient to use (Northwest Essentials, Inc., 2017). This will save money so that less pads will have to be bought or lost.  

The closest competitor would be the Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System. This system is a wireless stimulation machine that just stimulates the muscle. The difference between my innovation and the Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System is the fact that my handheld device would be able to control multiple stimulation units for multiple patients, and uses Bluetooth, and Wifi technology in order to be functional from across a clinic. The Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System also does not have its own cleaning tray in order to reuse the same pads over a longer period (Qi Analytics LLC, 2014).

Each of these items will be demonstrable with a 3D printed version. The handheld stimulation machine was actual size and took 12 hours to print. The tray is a miniature version that took 8 hours to print. Finally, the sample batteries took 4 hours. Each of these devices took an hour to program correctly, with an 8 hour mess up period for the first tray. The research took more than 3 hours in order to get all the necessary information.

+ Project Topic

Introduction to Topic

Introduction

The human body has many different systems that work together, each with specific components that allow us to function well. Problems arise, when these systems and components start to fail or injuries occur. Our bodies are made in such a way that everything is interconnected and if one part starts hurting, it could be from weakness in a completely different part of the body. Due to these connections, and inevitable injuries, we need a way to take care of our bodies so they can work properly. Physical therapy was created for just this purpose. This field is meant to  help patients manage and prevent further injuries (Physical Therapist- Overview, 2016).

+ Project Overview

Project Description

After careful thought, the product that would be most beneficial in the Physical Therapy field is a wireless stimulation machine. The stimulation machine itself will be a handheld device that could be transported around the room. The machine would have all the basic functions of a regular stimulation machine, but will have Bluetooth and Wifi technology in order to connect to the stimulation pads from across the room. The pads will be equipped with fourteen small, 110mAh lithium batteries in order to produce the necessary amount of voltages (Sabatini, 2011). This, along with the Bluetooth, and Wifi connector on the pads, will allow communication between the patient and physical therapist from across the room. When the stimulation process is complete, pads will be stored on the cleaning tray. This tray will have Spectra 360 Electrode Gel and Benzethonium Chloride mixture that will clean the pads when placed on it for the next patient to use (Northwest Essentials, Inc., 2017).

+ Experience

Experience Description

My shadowing experience was done at Agape Physical Therapy. I began volunteering at this location last year May. As a volunteer, I was expected to be able to do a number of tasks. These tasks included learning all the physical therapy exercises the office does, learning the short hand the aids use, and figuring out where everything in the room goes. In order for me to be successful volunteering at this physical therapy place, I had to relearn all the scientific words for  certain body movements, learn the aid shorthand, and memorize and understand all the exercises the patients do, to be able to correctly identify and explain them to a patient.

During my time volunteering I came in contact with a variety of different disabilities. Seeing the different ways, the therapist would deal with each patient, learn about their disability, and become a part of each patient’s life was truly amazing.

Although physical therapy can be very repetitive, when unique patient’s come in, it’s exciting. On one of the slow days, an interesting couple came in. The wife was rolled in, in a wheelchair. The therapist, Kathy, had to give her full attention to the patient. The patient had Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, or CIDP for short. When I asked the therapist what exactly CIDP was, she said it is a neurological disorder that causes the progressive weakness and impairment of sensory functions in a person’s legs and arms. Kathy explained it that the patient was bitten by a deer tick without even knowing and developed Lyme’s disease. Sometimes you just can’t tell or know that you have it, and hers progressed so far that  at this point she developed CIDP.  I didn’t truly understand what that meant until I talked to the patient herself. She explained it as not knowing where her own limbs were in space. Normally a sitting person can judge just about where their feet are, and possibly touch it without even looking. A person with CIDP can’t tell where their own feet or arms are unless they are looking directly at it. Because there is no curing this disorder they can only work with what they got. The exercises that the therapist made the patient do was mostly dealing with trying to do everyday tasks like standing up and balancing to build endurance.

The main goal was to get the wife out of the wheelchair and try to control where her feet were. In order for her to do this, the patient’s legs had to get stronger. For this to happen Kathy  tied a belt around the patient’s waist. This belt allowed the therapist to have a good place to grab and support the patient with. The bed was lowered down so that it was knee level, Kathy sat in front, and the patient was asked to stand for as long as she could at the end of the bed. When the patient was ready she would stand up for as long as she could before her legs gave out. They did this a total of 3 times with a lot of time in between for breaks because each session took a lot out of her. The most she could do in the end was 57 seconds. After a recovery period the therapist wanted to try something new to push her even more and see just how much she can do. The therapist set up the blocks below in a step like formation leading up to the biodex. The biodex tilts in different ways and is supposed to help measure balance. We got a walker out and put in above the steps and tried to help her make her way up . I was holding the walker in place for the patient to hold onto, the therapist was holding the belt and supporting the patient upright, while her husband was behind her with the wheelchair just in case. The problem was she couldn’t step up or down without looking at where her feet where and it took a lot out of her. In the end she couldn’t make it past the second step and we had to stop.

Throughout my experience, I was able to shadow many different PT’s and PTA’s that allowed me to appreciate just how important the physical therapy field is. I was able to see the progress and relationships built with every patient, and just how great of an impact physical therapy has on an individual. This field makes those who have undergone a tragic event be able to recover and be able to do tasks they previously couldn’t do, all while developing personal relationships with all of them.

+ Innovation

Innovation Description

I thought of my innovation idea through my shadowing experience. Part of my job requirement was being able to set up each patient on stimulation, on any part of the body. This meant I had to learn how to setup stimulation in general, then memorize the different ways to set it up depending on the part of the body.

A standard stimulation machine is a machine, usual placed on a cart, with two channels. Each channel has two break off points. These break off points are where the patient’s pads are attached. The most common type of setup I had to do was in inferential one. Depending on what the therapist wanted for the patient however, I needed to know premod as well as Russian. Inferential is when the same channels have to cross. I would set this is up by having the same channel with the two pads on this channel setup so that they are diagonal from one another, with the second channel doing the same thing in the same area. This meant I was setting up the pads so that they formed an X shape. Premod is set up so that two different parts of the body can be set up on stimulation at the same time. So one channel is used on one part of the body while the other channel is used for another. Finally, Russian is set up with channel one. One pad is placed on the thigh, and the other is placed in the inside of the thigh, right above the knee (Hoadley, 2016).

Depending on where the stim pads need to be set up, it became extremely frustrating when the pads would be set up, ready to go, but then the patient would move in order to get comfortable and one of the wires pop out, or the wire is tugged and the stim pad moves out of place. This is extremely frustrating when the pads are set up underneath the patient’s clothes, or underneath the game ready, which is a material that wraps around the injured area and expands and becomes cold. The game ready in itself takes 5 minutes to set up, so when a stimulation pad wire detaches underneath, this is very frustrating. When this happens, I have to unhook the game ready, or remove the heat or ice, then reattach the wires. Another issue that arises with stimulation machines is the fact that on physical therapist are allowed to turn them on. Due to this, I must interrupt the physical therapist, who has to leave their current patient, and turn on the machine for the other patient. This wastes time and impolite for the patient they leave.

Due to these two problems, my innovation are wireless stim pads with one central unit. How this works is the stimulation pads will be made so that they can conduct the same energy the regular stim unit does without the wires. The stimulation pads will have 14 mini lithium ion batteries attached to the top of the pads, a speaker with Bluetooth connection, and a wifi connector. These will correspond with the handheld machine that can be transported around the office. Each lithium battery can conduct about 5 volts of energy with a peak of 110mA. This is a perfect match to power a stimulation machine that needs a peak of 110 mA and 50 volts (Electrical Stimulation, 2017). The handheld device will also have a speaker with Bluetooth connection and wifi. The Bluetooth that will be incorporated into the device would be a class 1 Bluetooth that is able to work 100 meters, or 328 feet away (Sans Technology Institute , 2017). This will allow the patient and therapist to talk to each other from across the clinic and set stimulation up correctly. The handheld machine will have all the basic options as the regular stimulation machine, but this one device will be able to control multiple units. This means that with the one machine, therapists are able to turn on multiple patient stimulations from wherever they are in the clinic. The Bluetooth transmitter can handle up to 8 device at one time, which is perfect in the office where only 5 are usually  needed (Woodford, 2016).  

In the office, each patient has their own set of pads. In order to compensate for this, I have also created a self-cleaning tray. This tray will allow aids like myself to place the pads on the tray when the patient’s stimulation is complete. This tray will have a thin layer of Spectra 360 Electrode Gel and Benzethonium Chloride mixture that will sterilize the pads for the next patient to use (Northwest Essentials, Inc., 2017). This will save money so that less pads will have to be bought or lost.  

The closest competitor would be the Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System. This system is a wireless stimulation machine that just stimulates the muscle. The difference between my innovation and the Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System is the fact that my handheld device would be able to control multiple stimulation units for multiple patients, and uses Bluetooth, and Wifi technology in order to be functional from across a clinic. The Revolution Wireless Electrotherapy System also does not have its own cleaning tray in order to reuse the same pads over a longer period (Qi Analytics LLC, 2014).

Each of these items will be demonstrable with a 3D printed version. The handheld stimulation machine was actual size and took 12 hours to print. The tray is a miniature version that took 8 hours to print. Finally, the sample batteries took 4 hours. Each of these devices took an hour to program correctly, with an 8 hour mess up period for the first tray. The research took more than 3 hours in order to get all the necessary information.

By | 2017-05-15T15:55:03+00:00 May 15th, 2017|Biomed Capstone Project 2017|0 Comments

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