chapter  8
8 Pages

An AAC Communication Device for Patients with Total Paralysis

WithOshin R. Jacob, Sundar G. Naveen

Around ten crore people in the world suffer from developmental disorders which is a major social concern. Developmental disorders include cerebral palsy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and stroke. Communication for such people is a difficult task, both physically and psychologically. Alternative and augmentative communication devices today are less economical, which makes the affected rural patients the main sufferers. Thus, a simple blow-enabled communication system is developed taking into account the rural setting of the patient, which is both economical and user-friendly. The device allows the patient to communicate his/her basic needs within a span of seconds, thus making patient monitoring easy for the caretaker. The device consists of a Hall effect sensor connected to a tube and placed in the mouth of the patient. The patient blows into this tube to select predefined sentences which are recorded in the device to communicate. These recorded sentences convey the basic needs of the patient. The caretaker has the option to change these sentences or reorder the default recording based on the patient’s condition. The device was tested on seven patients and the results show that the minimum air flow rate required by a patient to communicate is 2 L/min and the time period required to select the desired sentence to be conveyed is a minimum of 40 ms.