Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic neurodegenerative disease of the central nervous system. MS is typically diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40. There is no known cause of the disease and each individual experiences varying signs and symptoms depending on the severity of their disease. The most common symptoms include tremor, debilitated gait, visual impairment, or cognitive and emotional disturbances.
Current methods used to treat MS include oral medication and surgical treatment. The issues with oral medication are the unwanted side effects to otherwise healthy tissue and the lack of patient adherence. Surgical treatment can be invasive and require longer recovery times. An alternate strategy to treat MS is by increasing the knowledge base of the practitioner to potentially treat specific symptoms. Currently, physicians use observations and MRI scans of the brain and spinal cord to help diagnose and track the progression of MS. There are several studies that analyze existing assistive technology to aid in the treatment of MS tremors. Most of these studies did not involve large test groups, therefore it is difficult to prove their validity. Additionally, none of the current devices are able to track symptoms while simultaneously creating medical history records.
The goal of the design is to create a new device that will obtain the frequency and amplitude of tremors, while analyzing the effects of temperature and heart rate on the intensity of the tremor. With this data, the device will advance further MS research and lead to better diagnosis and treatment.