ANR TREMOR project (2007-2010) : Compensation of pathological tremor Print
Tremor is defined as the involuntary rhythmic or semi rhythmic oscillation of a body part resulting from alternating of simultaneous contractions of antagonistic muscle groups. The tremor frequency may change but motion is always sinusoidal. Tremor is the most common abnormal motion encountered in human pathology. It is classified depending on the source and can be a rest tremor or an action tremor (kinetic or postural). The origin, the functional consequences and the treatment may change depending on the pathology. Pathological tremor affects 5-9% of the population age 40 and above. Common causes of pathological tremor include Parkinson’s disease or cerebellar dysfunctions (e.g. multiple sclerosis, stroke, etc.). Not only does this involuntary movement impair the activities of daily living of many patients, it also often leads to social embarrassment and even isolation. The lifetime economical and social cost as a result of a reduction in independence is an enormous burden to an individual, as well as the society.
The main objective of the project is then to propose an alternate solution to actual pharmacological or surgical therapies that may have limited results. This alternate solution is based on the active tremor compensation of the upper limbs via functional electrical stimulation. The project is composed of 4 subsections (two scientific, one technological and one clinical) which are successively i) modeling of pathological tremor, ii) synthesis of algorithms for active tremor compensation, iii) design of a prototype for a wearable orthosis and iv) clinical evaluation.
It involves a research laboratory (LIRMM), a company (MXM) expert in functional electrical stimulation and two clinical partners (CHU of Montpellier, Neurology Department, and Propara Rehabilitation Center).
The project is running with the scientific collaboration of the Biomedical Research and Engineering Center of the Nanyang Technological University in Singapour.


Scientific coordinator : P. Poignet