The Development of an Adaptive Device for Children with a Hand Impairment

  • E. Haring
  • K. Vaes
  • S. Truijen
  • M. Van Nuffel
  • L. Quirijnen
  • S. VerwulgenEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 824)


Children with mild symbrachydactyly (<4 missing fingers) are considered to have a low-degree of functional impairment. In this study, we suggest an adaptive device and evaluate the device on its beneficiary effects. Five children (age 6–10) are fitted with a prototype and are asked to train with the device at home for a period of three weeks. The SHAP-C test is used to measure the level of functionality of the healthy hand, the impaired hand and the prototype of the adaptive device. With the SHAP-C, no additional beneficial effects of the device were measured. However, children tended to use the device well for specific activities such as holding a fork during dinner. Also, three out of five reacted positively on the colourful design of the prototype adaptive device, wanting to show the device to family, friends and classmates. The results provide feedback for further improvements of adaptive devices to enhance motoric functionality and empower children with mild to severe symbrachydactyly.


Adaptive device Assistive technology Upper extremity deformities Symbrachydactyly 3D images 3D printing 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Haring
    • 1
  • K. Vaes
    • 1
  • S. Truijen
    • 2
  • M. Van Nuffel
    • 3
  • L. Quirijnen
    • 1
  • S. Verwulgen
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Product Development, Faculty of Design SciencesUniversity of AntwerpAntwerpBelgium
  2. 2.Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Physiotherapy, Faculty of Medicine and Health ScienceUniversity of AntwerpWilrijkBelgium
  3. 3.Hand Unit, Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity Hospitals LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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