Tags: parkinson | tremor | high | tech | spoon

High-Tech Spoon Helps Essential Tremor Patients Eat

By    |   Thursday, 15 May 2014 12:28 PM

A military engineer has developed a high-tech spoon that can help counteract the effects of tremors in people with Parkinson's disease to help them eat more easily.
The invention, detailed by NPR, could assist the estimated 10 million Americans who struggle with the tremors of Parkinson's and other disorders.
Engineer and inventor Anupam Pathak developed the so-called Liftware spoon while working on stabilizing technology for the Army Research Laboratory. In effect, it cancels out the effects of tremors by vibrating in the user's hand. There's no on-off switch; the spoon starts up automatically when it's lifted from the table.
"There's a little motion sensor right near the spoon," Pathak explained. "If I had tremor, it's going to move opposite to what the shaking is doing. So, if I move to the left, it'll physically move the spoon to the right."
In tests, the Liftware spoon canceled out more than 70 percent of a user's tremors.
"I don't think it took us five minutes to say, 'This is remarkable,' " said Sheila Garner, who oversees senior and assisted living facilities in Northern California run by Brookdale Senior Living. She was impressed enough with the Liftware spoon to order some for her residents.
"We'll be able to free up staff time from assisting people with eating," Garner said. But her focus, she says, is on restoring the dignity that her residents with essential tremor lost when they could no longer feed themselves.

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A high-tech spoon has been developed by a military engineer that can help counteract the effects of tremors in people with Parkinson's disease to help them eat more easily,
parkinson, tremor, high, tech, spoon
Thursday, 15 May 2014 12:28 PM
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