Parkinson's disease (PD) is a long-term degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. There are 10 million Parkinson's disease patients globally. Parkinson's disease has become the "third killer" among middle-aged and elderly people. About two-thirds of the patients have gait freezing phenomenon, causing frequent disturbances and greatly affecting their daily life.
Freezing of Gait
Freezing of gait (FoG) is a mobility problem where walking becomes hesitant and may cease entirely. FoG affects approximately 26% of patients with mild Parkinson's disease and 80% with severe Parkinson's disease. It is a common reason for falling accidents and dependency. It likely occurs in the under situations including turning, starting to walk, approaching a destination, narrow spaces such as doorways or lavatories and stressful, rushed situations such as hearing a knock at the door or when an elevator door opens. It may also appear unpredictably without any external trigger. Patients are less confident and less willing to go outdoors. Some patients may have to use wheelchair although their legs can move, hence reducing their quality of life. Currently, no drugs can effectively alleviate the phenomenon of gait freezing.
The walking aids system has three components.
Visual cue device: Using laser projection to provide visual guidance to the user for starting and maintaining walking pace. Visual cue device can be attached to pants, belts and canes.
Tactile insoles: Provides tactile guidelines to walk the rhythm to the user through vibration, improve the attention to walking and reduce the freezing phenomenon caused by the distracted surroundings.The app communicates with laser device, insoles and internet server. It provides data visualization, customize setting and networking function.