The KneeMo®

A Device with a Brain
By: Tom Andriacchi

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  • The KneeMo® consist of two bands that are worn above and below the knee cap.
  • The Bands contain a microprocessor, motion sensors, a Bluetooth radio and vibration motors as well as rechargeable batteries.
  • The bands are “smart” in that they are programmed to sense motion during activities and trigger an intermittent vibrational stimulus at specific phases during ambulation. 
  • The bands communicate through blue tooth communication to an App on a smart device that can be used to adjust the vibrational to the activity and needs of the user.
  • It was found in clinical testing of KneeMo® that synchronizing the activation of the stimulus to specific phases of the gait cycle enhanced pain relief and muscle activation.  

References

  1. AG Fischer, JC Erhart-Hledik, JL Asay, CR Chu, TP Andriacchi, Activating the somatosensory system enhances net quadriceps moment during gait, , Journal of biomechanics 82, 149-155, 2019
  2. AG Fischer, JC Erhart-Hledik, JL Asay, CR Chu, TP Andriacchi, Activating the somatosensory system enhances knee flexion and quadriceps activity during gait and stair climbing, Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 27, S63-S64, 2019.
  3. AG Fischer, JC Erhart-Hledik, JL Asay, CR Chu, TP Andriacchi, Utilizing the somatosensory system via vibratory stimulation to mitigate knee pain during walking: Randomized clinical trial Gait & Posture 80, 37-43, 2020.
  4. Andriacchi and Hledik, “Cutaneous Stimulation Devices and Methods of Using the Same” US Patent Application Number 15/561,012, 2017

Knee Pain – KneeMo® – Historical Motivation and Need
By: Tom Andriacchi

  • The motivation for developing The KneeMo® came from a long history of the study of gait in patients with painful knees due to injury and/or osteoarthritis.
  • The common finding in these studies was that these patients walk with reduced quadriceps muscle function.
  • As studies advance it was found that reduced quadriceps function was associated with pain, instability and loss of proprioception when walking.
  • Reduced quadriceps function during walking is also associated with reduced activity and presents a barrier to rehabilitation that addresses restoring strength and motion at the knee.
  • There is a need for simple and safe methods to mitigate pain and enhance function without drugs — The KneeMo® was developed to this need.

References

  1. Berchuck M, Andriacchi TP, Bach BR, Reider B: Gait adaptations by patients who have a deficient anterior cruciate ligament.  J Bone Joint Surg, 72A(6):871-877, 1990.
  2. Schnitzer TJ, Popovich JM, Andersson GB, Andriacchi TP: Effect of piroxicam on gait in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee. Arthritis Rheum 36(9) 1207-1213, 1993.
  3. Noyes FR, Dunworth LA, Andriacchi TP, Andrews Mrg AG, Ga and Hewett TE: Knee hyperextension gait abnormalities in unstable knees:  Recognition and preoperative gait retraining. Am J of Sports Med 24:1, 35-45, 1996.
  4. Hurwitz DE, Andriacchi TP, Bush-Joseph CA, Bach BR Jr: Functional adaptations in patients with ACL-deficient knees. Exerc Sport Sci Rev 25, 1-20, 1997
  5. Andriacchi T, Muendermann A. The role of ambulatory mechanics in the initiation and progression of knee osteoarthritis, Curr Opin Rheumatol. 18(5):514-518, Sep 2006.
  6. Henriksen M, Graven-Nielsen T, Aaboe J, Andriacchi T, Bliddal H. Gait changes in patients with knee osteoarthritis are replicated by experimental knee pain, Arthritis Care Res. 62(4):501-9, Apr 2010.
  7. Boyer K, Angst M, Giori N, Asay J, Andriacchi T. Sensitivity of gait parameters to the effects of anti-inflammatory and opioid treatments in knee osteoarthritis patients, J Orthop Res. 30(7): 1118-24, Jul 2012.
  8. Andriacchi T, Favre J. The nature of in vivo mechanical signals that influence cartilage health and progression to knee osteoarthritis, Curr Rheumatol Rep. 16(11):463, Nov 2014.
  9. Erhart-Hledik JC, Chu CR, Asay JL, Andriacchi TP. Longitudinal changes in knee gait mechanics between 2 and 8 years after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. J Orthop Res. 2017 Oct 6. doi: 10.1002/jor.23770.
  10. Culvenor AG, Ruhdorfer A, Juhl C, Eckstein F, Elin Øiestad B. Knee Extensor Strength and Risk of Structural, Symptomatic, and unctional Decline in Knee Osteoarthritis: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Arthritis Care and Research. 2017;69(5):649-658.
  11. March, Cross, Arden, Hawker, Osteoarthritis: A serious disease,
  12. Andriacchi, Griffin, Loeser Chu Roo, Hawker, Hledik, Fischer, Bridging Disciplines as a pathway to Finding New Solutions for Osteoarthritis, Osteoarthritis and Cartilage Open, Volume 2, Issue 1, March 2020, 100026