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Elisha Sanoussi, Esther Ibikunle, Yog Vaghani, Ziyu Li, Helena Thenot
Back ‘n business
Improved support system for post-lumbar surgery care
Smart Brace is an innovated back brace that is designed to drastically improve the ease of use for its users who are recovering from lumbar surgery as well as provide the adequate support necessary for recovery. This support system consists of two main structures: (a) a rigid material along the lower back to provide lumbar support and (b) semi-rigid material that runs along the waist. The layering of specific materials is designed to increase user comfort and breathability, especially around the wound site. Smart Brace is first put on by a velcro mechanism as a method of placement for the user. The design includes a tightening system that utilizes laces that are connected across the lumbar region and a boa system that brings them together to retain the tension on the brace. The Boa system is a mechanism that allows the user to ratchet some form of a string within an internal spool without it unrolling due to tension on such string. The head interlocks with the internal spindle and causes the string to be pulled in when moved in a clockwise manner while in the locking position. The tension on the string is released by simply lifting the boa head until a small click is heard. Once that occurs, the user can simply detach the velcro and remove Smart Brace. A hand-held electronic device is used in conjunction with this tightening system to tighten the brace by rotating the boa head. As a measure to keep the user from over-tightening the brace, the device is programmed to detect when the user should stop tightening the brace. This device is designed to apply innovation to the spinal orthosis industry and create an automated version of an old technology.