First Kinect PT app goes into clinical trials

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Today's inspirational post shows how the Kinect is taking a new, big step in how it's used in the medical field...

First Microsoft Kinect PT app to go into clinical trials

The West Health Institute announced that it has developed technology to aid physical therapy professionals and patients using Microsoft’s Kinect for Windows motion tracking platform. The application leverages Microsoft’s Kinect for Windows motion camera and a Windows 7 personal computer and provides interactive feedback and educational materials to help providers improve patient adherence to regimens and ensure that the exercises are performed correctly. The Institute is beginning clinical research studies of the technology with the Naval Medical Center of San Diego.

While there have been previous technology demonstrations that leveraged Kinect for physical therapy, the West Health Institute’s Spencer Hutchins, who co-invented the technology and serves as the project’s lead, told InformationWeek that the application, called Reflexion Rehabilitation Measurement Tool (RMT), is the first physical therapy app leveraging Kinect to go into clinical trials. The clinical research pilot studies will review the program’s usability and participants’ adherence to therapy. Later studies will also measure clinical outcomes.


“The biggest problem with physical therapy is patients not doing enough of it or not doing it properly,” Hutchins stated. “We are building a tool to help physical therapists measure progress in a fun way that could potentially help patients heal faster.”

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