Developing a Pen for Tremor Patients

A. Kumagai, Y. Suh, T. Tracy, K. Naritomi, and K. Pierson (USA)


Pen, Tremor, Vibration isolation


A large number of people suffer from tremors that result in difficulty to perform daily tasks. In this paper, we focused on the writing task of tremor patients and developed a pen for the patients. The pen consists of a hollow pen shell, a pen rod, and a spring-damper element between the rod and the shell. It is designed to passively isolate the pen-rod from the vibration of the pen shell held by a tremor patient. The mass of the pen rod and the stiffness of the spring element are obtained based on the vibration isolation principle considering frequency above 4 Hz and about 2.5 cm of peak-to-peak amplitude. A computer model of the pen was created and analyzed through kinematics/dynamics simulations and finite element analysis. Computer simulations and prototype validation verifies that the proposed pen significantly improves legibility of handwriting by tremor patients.

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