International Science Index

111
10008977
When Psychology Meets Ecology: Cognitive Flexibility for Quarry Rehabilitation
Abstract:

Ecological projects are often faced with reluctance from local communities hosting the project, especially when this project involves variation from preset ideas or classical practices. This paper aims at appreciating the contribution of environmental psychology through cognitive flexibility exercises to improve the acceptability of local communities in adopting more ecological rehabilitation scenarios. The study is based on a quarry site located in Bekaa- Lebanon. Four groups were considered with different levels of involvement, as follows: Group 1 is Training (T) – 50 hours of on-site training over 8 months, Group 2 is Awareness (A) – 2 hours of awareness raising session, Group 3 is Flexibility (F) – 2 hours of flexibility exercises and Group 4 is the Control (C). The results show that individuals in Group 3 (F) who followed flexibility sessions accept comparably the ecological rehabilitation option over the more classical one. This is also the case for the people in Group 1 (T) who followed a more time-demanding “on-site training”. Another experience was conducted on a second quarry site combining flexibility with awareness-raising. This research confirms that it is possible to reduce resistance to change thanks to a limited in-time intervention using cognitive flexibility. This methodological approach could be transferable to other environmental problems involving local communities and changes in preset perceptions.

Paper Detail
53
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110
10008897
The Difficulties Witnessed by People with Intellectual Disability in Transition to Work in Saudi Arabia
Abstract:

The transition of a student with a disability from school to work is the most crucial phase while moving from the stage of adolescence into early adulthood. In this process, young individuals face various difficulties and challenges in order to accomplish the next venture of life successfully. In this respect, this paper aims to examine the challenges encountered by the individuals with intellectual disabilities in transition to work in Saudi Arabia. For this purpose, this study has undertaken a qualitative research-based methodology; wherein interpretivist philosophy has been followed along with inductive approach and exploratory research design. The data for the research has been gathered with the help of semi-structured interviews, whose findings are analysed with the help of thematic analysis. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with parents of persons with intellectual disabilities, officials, supervisors and specialists of two vocational rehabilitation centres providing training to intellectually disabled students, in addition to that, directors of companies and websites in hiring those individuals. The total number of respondents for the interview was 15. The purposive sampling method was used to select the respondents for the interview. This sampling method is a non-probability sampling method which draws respondents from a known population and allows flexibility and suitability in selecting the participants for the study. The findings gathered from the interview revealed that the lack of awareness among their parents regarding the rights of their children who are intellectually disabled; the lack of adequate communication and coordination between various entities; concerns regarding their training and subsequent employment are the key difficulties experienced by the individuals with intellectual disabilities. Training in programmes such as bookbinding, carpentry, computing, agriculture, electricity and telephone exchange operations were involved as key training programmes. The findings of this study also revealed that information technology and media were playing a significant role in smoothing the transition to employment of individuals with intellectual disabilities. Furthermore, religious and cultural attitudes have been identified to be restricted for people with such disabilities in seeking advantages from job opportunities. On the basis of these findings, it can be implied that the information gathered through this study will serve to be highly beneficial for Saudi Arabian schools/ rehabilitation centres for individuals with intellectual disability to facilitate them in overcoming the problems they encounter during the transition to work.

Paper Detail
89
downloads
109
10008662
Quality Function Deployment Application in Sewer Pipeline Assessment
Abstract:

Infrastructure assets are essential in urban cities; their purpose is to facilitate the public needs. As a result, their conditions and states shall always be monitored to avoid any sudden malfunction. Sewer systems, one of the assets, are an essential part of the underground infrastructure as they transfer sewer medium to designated areas. However, their conditions are subject to deterioration due to ageing. Therefore, it is of great significance to assess the conditions of pipelines to avoid sudden collapses. Current practices of sewer pipeline assessment rely on industrial protocols that consider distinct defects and grades to conclude the limited average or peak score of the assessed assets. This research aims to enhance the evaluation by integrating the Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and the Decision-Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory (DEMATEL) methods in assessing the condition of sewer pipelines. The methodology shall study the cause and effect relationship of the systems’ defects to deduce the relative influence weights of each defect. Subsequently, the overall grade is calculated by aggregating the WHAT’s and HOW’s of the House of Quality (HOQ) using the computed relative weights. Thus, this study shall enhance the evaluation of the assets to conclude informative rehabilitation and maintenance plans for decision makers.

Paper Detail
100
downloads
108
10008740
Quality of Life Assessment across the Cancer Continuum: Understanding the Role of an Exercise Rehabilitation Programme
Abstract:

The Quality of Life (QoL) paradigm is multidimensional, dynamic and modular and its definition differs across the cancer continuum. The challenge in the interpretation of QoL data in clinical research is that QoL is influenced by psychological phenomena such as adaptation to illness. This research aims to obtain a valid and sensitive assessment of QoL change over the continuum disease, and to evaluate a rehabilitation programme aimed at inverting the observed decrease in QoL when patients return to daily living activities. The sample comprised 66 men. Patients were first assessed to establish a baseline (P1-diagnosis). This was followed by a post-test (P2-discharge) and a then-test measurement (P3-retrospective evaluation) and after returning home patients were randomized in experimental and control groups. The experimental group attended a rehabilitation programme over 24 weeks (P4). Results show that from baseline to post-test, QoL decreased significantly. The recalibration then-test confirmed a low QoL in all periods evaluated. Significant differences between the experimental and control groups prove the positive effect of the Exercise Rehabilitation Programme (ERP) on QoL. Understanding the real dynamic of QoL over time would help to adapt rehabilitation programmes by improving sensitivity and efficacy and provide professionals with a more accurate perception of the impact of treatment and side effects on patients’ QoL. Our results underline the importance of changing the approach adopted by health professionals towards one of watchful waiting on patients’ QoL until their complete recovery in daily life.

Paper Detail
120
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107
10008342
Street Begging and Its Psychosocial Social Effects in Ibadan Metropolis, Oyo State, Nigeria
Abstract:

This study investigated street begging and its psychosocial effect in Ibadan Metropolis, Oyo State, Nigeria. In carrying out this study, four research questions were used. The instrument used for data collection was a face-to-face and self-developed questionnaire. The results revealed there is high awareness level on the causes of street begging among the respondents, who also mentioned several factors contributing to street begging. However, respondents disagreed that lack of education is a factor contributing to street begging in Nigeria. The psycho-social effects of street begging, as identified by the respondents, are development of inferiority complex, lack of social interaction, loss of self-respect and dignity, increased mindset of poverty and loss of self-confident. Solution to street begging as identified by the respondents also includes provision of rehabilitation centers, provision of food for students in Islamic schools and monthly survival allowance. Specific policies and other legislative frameworks are needed in terms of age, sex, disability, and family-related issues, to effectively address the begging problem. Therefore, it is recommended that policy planners must adopt multi-faceted, multi-targeted, and multi-tiered approaches if they are to have any impact on the lives of street beggars in all four categories. In this regard, both preventative and responsive interventions are needed instead of rehabilitative solutions for each category of street beggars.

Paper Detail
711
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106
10007884
Analyzing the Performance Properties of Stress Absorbing Membrane Interlayer Modified with Recycled Crumb Rubber
Abstract:
Asphalt overlay is the most commonly used technique of pavement rehabilitation. However, the reflective cracks which occur on the overlay surface after a short period of time are the most important distresses threatening the durability of new overlays. Stress Absorbing Membrane Interlayers (SAMIs) are used to postpone the reflective cracking in the overlays. Sand asphalt mixtures, in unmodified or crumb rubber modified (CRM) conditions, can be used as an SAMI material. In this research, the performance properties of different SAMI applications were evaluated in the laboratory using an Indirect Tensile (IDT) fracture energy. The IDT fracture energy of sand asphalt samples was also evaluated and then compared to that of the regular dense graded asphalt used as an overlay. Texas boiling water and modified Lottman tests were also conducted to evaluate the moisture susceptibility of sand asphalt mixtures. The test results showed that sand asphalt mixtures can stand higher levels of energy before cracking, and this is even more pronounced for the CRM sand mix. Sand asphalt mixture using CRM binder was also shown to be more resistance to moisture induced distresses.
Paper Detail
252
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105
10008112
Applying WILSERV in Measuring Visitor Satisfaction at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre (SORC)
Abstract:

There is an increasing worldwide demand on the field of interaction with wildlife tourism. Studies pertaining to the service quality within the sphere of interaction with wildlife tourism are plentiful. However, studies on service quality in wildlife attractions, especially on semi-captured wildlife tourism are still limited. The Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre (SORC) in Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia is one good example of a semi-captured wildlife attraction and a renowned attraction in Sabah. This study presents a gap analysis by measuring the perception and expectation of service quality at SORC through the use of a modified SERVQUAL, referred to as WILSERV. A survey questionnaire was devised and administered to 190 visitors who visited SORC. The study revealed that all the means of the six dimensions for perceived perceptions were lower than the expectations. The highest gap was from the dimension of reliability (-0.21), followed by tangible (-0.17), responsiveness (-0.11), assurance, (-0.11), empathy (-0.11) and wild-tangible (-0.05). Similarly, the study also showed that all six dimensions for perceived perceptions means were lower than the expectations for both local and foreign visitors.

Paper Detail
177
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104
10008441
Maternal and Child Health Care: A Study among the Rongmeis of Manipur, India
Abstract:

Background: Maternal and child health (MCH) cares are the health services provided to mothers and children. It includes the health promotion, preventive, curative and rehabilitation health care for mothers and children. Materials and method: The present study sample comprises of 208 women within the age range 15-69 years from two remote villages of Tamenglong District in Manipur. They were randomly chosen for assessing their health as well as the child’s health adopting an interview schedule method. Results: The findings of the study revealed that majority (80%) of the women have their first conception in their first year of married life. A decadal change has been observed with regard to the last pregnancy i.e., antenatal check-up, place of delivery as well as the service provider. However, irrespective of age of the women, home delivery is still preferred though very few are locally trained. Pre- and post-delivery resting period vary depending on the busy schedule of the agricultural works as the population under study is basically agriculturist. Postnatal care remains to be traditional as they are strongly associated with cultural beliefs and practices that continue to prevail in the studied community. Breast feeding practices such as colostrums given, initiation of breastfeeding, weaning was all taken into account.  Immunization of children has not reached the expected target owing to a variety of reasons. Maternal health care also includes use of birth control measures. The health status of women would invariably improve if family planning is meaningfully adopted. Only 10.1% of the women adopted the modern birth control implying its deep-rooted value attached to the children. Based on the self-assessment report on their health treatment a good number of the respondents resorted to self-medication even to the extent of buying allopathic medicine without a doctor’s prescription. One important finding from the study is the importance attributed to the traditional health care system which is easily affordable and accessible to the villagers. Conclusion: The overall condition of maternal and child care is way behind till now as no adequate/proper health services are available.

Paper Detail
93
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103
10006823
Creating a Virtual Perception for Upper Limb Rehabilitation
Abstract:
This paper describes the development of a virtual-reality system ARWED, which will be used in physical rehabilitation of patients with reduced upper extremity mobility to increase limb Active Range of Motion (AROM). The ARWED system performs a symmetric reflection and real-time mapping of the patient’s healthy limb on to their most affected limb, tapping into the mirror neuron system and facilitating the initial learning phase. Using the ARWED, future experiments will test the extension of the action-observation priming effect linked to the mirror-neuron system on healthy subjects and then stroke patients.
Paper Detail
454
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102
10006969
Electromyography Pattern Classification with Laplacian Eigenmaps in Human Running
Abstract:

Electromyography (EMG) is one of the most important interfaces between humans and robots for rehabilitation. Decoding this signal helps to recognize muscle activation and converts it into smooth motion for the robots. Detecting each muscle’s pattern during walking and running is vital for improving the quality of a patient’s life. In this study, EMG data from 10 muscles in 10 subjects at 4 different speeds were analyzed. EMG signals are nonlinear with high dimensionality. To deal with this challenge, we extracted some features in time-frequency domain and used manifold learning and Laplacian Eigenmaps algorithm to find the intrinsic features that represent data in low-dimensional space. We then used the Bayesian classifier to identify various patterns of EMG signals for different muscles across a range of running speeds. The best result for vastus medialis muscle corresponds to 97.87±0.69 for sensitivity and 88.37±0.79 for specificity with 97.07±0.29 accuracy using Bayesian classifier. The results of this study provide important insight into human movement and its application for robotics research.

Paper Detail
276
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101
10006973
MAGNI Dynamics: A Vision-Based Kinematic and Dynamic Upper-Limb Model for Intelligent Robotic Rehabilitation
Abstract:
This paper presents a home-based robot-rehabilitation instrument, called ”MAGNI Dynamics”, that utilized a vision-based kinematic/dynamic module and an adaptive haptic feedback controller. The system is expected to provide personalized rehabilitation by adjusting its resistive and supportive behavior according to a fuzzy intelligence controller that acts as an inference system, which correlates the user’s performance to different stiffness factors. The vision module uses the Kinect’s skeletal tracking to monitor the user’s effort in an unobtrusive and safe way, by estimating the torque that affects the user’s arm. The system’s torque estimations are justified by capturing electromyographic data from primitive hand motions (Shoulder Abduction and Shoulder Forward Flexion). Moreover, we present and analyze how the Barrett WAM generates a force-field with a haptic controller to support or challenge the users. Experiments show that by shifting the proportional value, that corresponds to different stiffness factors of the haptic path, can potentially help the user to improve his/her motor skills. Finally, potential areas for future research are discussed, that address how a rehabilitation robotic framework may include multisensing data, to improve the user’s recovery process.
Paper Detail
348
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100
10007383
IntelliCane: A Cane System for Individuals with Lower-Limb Mobility and Functional Impairments
Abstract:
The purpose of this research paper is to study and develop a system that is able to help identify problems and improve human rehabilitation after traumatic injuries. Traumatic injuries in human’s lower limbs can occur over a life time and can have serious side effects if they are not treated correctly. In this paper, we developed an intelligent cane (IntelliCane) so as to help individuals in their rehabilitation process and provide feedback to the users. The first stage of the paper involves an analysis of the existing systems on the market and what can be improved. The second stage presents the design of the system. The third part, which is still under development is the validation of the system in real world setups with people in need. This paper presents mainly stages one and two.
Paper Detail
192
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99
10006508
A Retrospective Study of Vaginal Stenosis Following Treatment of Cervical Cancers and the Effectiveness of Rehabilitation Interventions
Abstract:

Vaginal stenosis is a common side effect associated with pelvic radiotherapy in cervical cancer patients which contributes negatively to woman’s health and prevents adequate vaginal/cervical examination. Vaginal dilation with a dilator is routine practice and is internationally advocated as a prophylactic measure to preserve vaginal patency. This retrospective study was carried out with the aim to know the usefulness of vaginal dilation following pelvic radiation therapy in cervical cancer patients in India. Data from medical records of 183 cervical cancer patients, which met the study criteria, were collected related to the stage of the disease, treatment received, commencement period of dilation post radiation therapy, sexual status and side effects associated to dilation practice. Data related to vaginal dimensions as per the length of insertion of a small, medium and large dilator were collected on regular follow-ups until 36 months and/or more. Vaginal dimensions as measured with the length of medium dilator insertion were used for analysis of dilation therapy results using paired t-test. Patients who underwent vaginal dilation with dilator maintained vaginal patency, also the mean vaginal length significantly increased, from 8.02 cm ± 2.69 to 9.96 ± 2.89 cm with a p value <0.001. There was no significant difference found on vaginal patency with different intervals of initiation of dilation therapy. At the third year and more following dilation therapy, significant increase in vaginal length observed with a p value of 0.0001 in both sexually active and inactive patients. Compilation of vaginal dosage during brachytherapy was inadequate, and hence, the secondary objective of the study to determine the effect of radiotherapy on the outcome of rehabilitation intervention was not studied in detail. This retrospective study has found that dilation therapy with vaginal dilators post pelvic radiotherapy is effective in preventing vaginal stenosis and improving vaginal patency and cannot be substituted with vaginal intercourse. Sexual quality of life assessment in the Indian population needs much attention.

Paper Detail
407
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98
10006849
Energy Intensity of a Historical Downtown: Estimating the Energy Demand of a Budapest District
Abstract:

The dense urban fabric of the 7th district of Budapest -known as the former Jewish Quarter-, contains mainly historical style, multi-story tenement houses with courtyards. The high population density and the unsatisfactory energetic state of the buildings result high energy consumption. As a preliminary survey of a complex rehabilitation plan, the authors aim to determine the energy demand of the area. The energy demand was calculated by analyzing the structure and the energy consumption of each building by using Geographic Information System (GIS) methods. The carbon dioxide emission was also calculated, to assess the potential of reducing the present state value by complex structural and energetic rehabilitation. As a main focus of the survey, an energy intensity map has been created about the area.

Paper Detail
272
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97
10007025
Assessment of Rehabilitation Possibilities in Case of Budapest Jewish Quarter Building Stock
Abstract:
The dense urban fabric of the Budapest 7th district is known as the former Jewish Quarter. The majority of the historical building stock contains multi-story tenement houses with courtyards, built around the end of the 19th century. Various rehabilitation and urban planning attempt occurred until today, mostly left unfinished. Present paper collects the past rehabilitation plans, actions and their effect which took place in the former Jewish District of Budapest. The authors aim to assess the boundaries of a complex building stock rehabilitation, by taking into account the monument protection guidelines. As a main focus of the research, structural as well as energetic rehabilitation possibilities are analyzed in case of each building by using Geographic Information System (GIS) methods.
Paper Detail
260
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96
10006485
Concept of Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion Cage Insertion Device
Abstract:
Transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) surgeries have nowadays became popular for treatment of degenerated spinal disorders. The interbody fusion technique like TLIF maintains load bearing capacity of the spine and a suitable disc height. Currently many techniques have been introduced to cure Spondylolisthesis. This surgery provides greater rehabilitation of degenerative spines. While performing this TLIF surgery existing methods use guideway, which is a troublesome surgery technique as the use of two separate instruments is required to perform this surgery. This paper presents a concept which eliminates the use of guideway. This concept also eliminates problems that occur like reverting the cage. The concept discussed in this paper also gives high accuracy while performing surgery.
Paper Detail
374
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95
10005588
PYTHEIA: A Scale for Assessing Rehabilitation and Assistive Robotics
Abstract:

The objective of the present study was to develop a scale called PYTHEIA. The PYTHEIA is a self-reported measure for the assessment of rehabilitation and assistive robotics and other assistive technology devices. The development of PYTHEIA faced the absence of a valid instrument that can be used to evaluate the assistive robotic devices both as a whole, as well as any of their individual components or functionalities implemented. According to the results presented, PYTHEIA is a valid and reliable scale able to be applied to different target groups for the subjective evaluation of various assistive technology devices.

Paper Detail
652
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94
10005737
The Role of Public Education in Increasing Public Awareness through Mass Media with Emphasis on Newspapers and TV: Coping with Possible Earthquake in Tehran
Abstract:

This study aimed to evaluate the role of state education in increasing public awareness through mass media (with emphasis on newspapers and TV) coping with possible earthquake in Tehran. All residents aged 15 to 65 who live in the five regions of Tehran (North, South, East, West and Center) during the plan implementation were selected and studied. The required sample size in each region was calculated based on the Cochran formula (n=380). In order to collect and analyze the data, a questionnaire with reliability (82%) and a one-sample t-test has been used, respectively. The results showed that warnings related to the Tehran earthquake affected people in the pre-contemplation stage, while public education through mass media did not promote public awareness about prevention, preparedness and rehabilitation.

Paper Detail
452
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93
10005861
Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation Exercises of Upper Extremities Assessment Using Microsoft Kinect Sensor and Color Marker in a Virtual Reality Environment
Abstract:

Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation exercises are a series of stretching techniques that are commonly used in rehabilitation and exercise therapy. Assessment of these exercises for true maneuvering requires extensive experience in this field and could not be down with patients themselves. In this paper, we developed software that uses Microsoft Kinect sensor, a spherical color marker, and real-time image processing methods to evaluate patient’s performance in generating true patterns of movements. The software also provides the patient with a visual feedback by showing his/her avatar in a Virtual Reality environment along with the correct path of moving hand, wrist and marker. Primary results during PNF exercise therapy of a patient in a room environment shows the ability of the system to identify any deviation of maneuvering path and direction of the hand from the one that has been performed by an expert physician.

Paper Detail
596
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92
10004974
Iterative Estimator-Based Nonlinear Backstepping Control of a Robotic Exoskeleton
Abstract:
A repetitive training movement is an efficient method to improve the ability and movement performance of stroke survivors and help them to recover their lost motor function and acquire new skills. The ETS-MARSE is seven degrees of freedom (DOF) exoskeleton robot developed to be worn on the lateral side of the right upper-extremity to assist and rehabilitate the patients with upper-extremity dysfunction resulting from stroke. Practically, rehabilitation activities are repetitive tasks, which make the assistive/robotic systems to suffer from repetitive/periodic uncertainties and external perturbations induced by the high-order dynamic model (seven DOF) and interaction with human muscle which impact on the tracking performance and even on the stability of the exoskeleton. To ensure the robustness and the stability of the robot, a new nonlinear backstepping control was implemented with designed tests performed by healthy subjects. In order to limit and to reject the periodic/repetitive disturbances, an iterative estimator was integrated into the control of the system. The estimator does not need the precise dynamic model of the exoskeleton. Experimental results confirm the robustness and accuracy of the controller performance to deal with the external perturbation, and the effectiveness of the iterative estimator to reject the repetitive/periodic disturbances.
Paper Detail
602
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91
10005022
Modeling and Control of a 4DoF Robotic Assistive Device for Hand Rehabilitation
Abstract:
For those who have lost the ability to move their hand, going through repetitious motions with the assistance of a therapist is the main method of recovery. We have been developed a robotic assistive device to rehabilitate the hand motions in place of the traditional therapy. The developed assistive device (RAD-HR) is comprised of four degrees of freedom enabling basic movements, hand function, and assists in supporting the hand during rehabilitation. We used a nonlinear computed torque control technique to control the RAD-HR. The accuracy of the controller was evaluated in simulations (MATLAB/Simulink environment). To see the robustness of the controller external disturbance as modelling uncertainty (±10% of joint torques) were added in each joints.
Paper Detail
657
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90
10005036
Tracking Trajectory of a Cable-Driven Robot for Lower Limb Rehabilitation
Abstract:
This paper investigates and presents a cable-driven robot to lower limb rehabilitation use in sagittal plane. The presented rehabilitation robot is used for a trajectory tracking in joint space. The paper covers kinematic and dynamic analysis, which reveals the tensionability of the used cables as being the actuating source to provide a rehabilitation exercises of the human leg. The desired trajectory is generated to be used in the control system design in joint space. The obtained simulation results is showed to be efficient in this kind of application.
Paper Detail
863
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89
10005166
A Knee Modular Orthosis Design Based on Kinematic Considerations
Abstract:
This paper addresses attention to a research regarding the design of a knee orthosis in a modular form used on children walking rehabilitation. This research is focused on the human lower limb kinematic analysis which will be used as input data on virtual simulations and prototype validation. From this analysis, important data will be obtained and used as input for virtual simulations of the knee modular orthosis. Thus, a knee orthosis concept was obtained and validated through virtual simulations by using MSC Adams software. Based on the obtained results, the modular orthosis prototype will be manufactured and presented in this article.
Paper Detail
525
downloads
88
10005262
The Effect of a Three-Month Training Program on the Back Kyphosis of Former Male Addicts
Abstract:

Adopting inappropriate body posture during addiction can cause muscular and skeletal deformities. This study is aimed at investigating the effects of a program of the selected corrective exercises on the kyphosis of addicted male patients. Materials and methods: This was a quasi-experimental study. This study has been carried out using the semi-experimental method. The subjects of the present study included 104 addicted men between 25 to 45 years of age. In 2014, these men were referred to one of the NA (Narcotic Anonymous) centres in Kashan in 2015. A total of 24 people suffering from drug withdrawal, who had abnormal kyphosis, were purposefully selected as a sample. The sample was randomly divided into two groups, experimental and control; each group consisted of 12 people. The experimental group participated in a training program for 12 weeks consisting of three 60 minute sessions per week. That includes strengthening, stretching and PNF exercises (deep stretching of the muscle). The control group did no exercise or corrective activity. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov test was used to assess normal distribution of data; and a paired t-test and covariance analysis test were used to assess the effectiveness of the exercises, with a significance level of P≤0.05 by using SPSS18. The results showed that three months of the selected corrective exercises had a significant effect (P≤ 0.005) on the correction of the kyphosis of the addicted male patients after three months of rehabilitation (drug withdrawal) in the experimental group, while there was no significant difference recorded in the control group (P≥0.05). The results show that exercise and corrective activities can be used as non-invasive and non-pharmacological methods to rehabilitate kyphosis abnormalities after drug withdrawal and treatment for addiction.

Paper Detail
731
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87
10005370
Investigation of Failures in Wadi-Crossing Pipe Culverts, Sennar State, Sudan
Abstract:
Crossing culverts are essential element of rural roads. The paper aims to investigate failures of recently constructed wadi-crossing pipe culverts in Sennar state and provide necessary remedial measures. The investigation is conducted to provide an extensive diagnosis study in order to find out the main structural and hydrological weaknesses of the culverts. Literature of steel pipe culverts related to construction practices and common types of culvert failures and their appropriate mitigation measures were reviewed. A detailed field survey was conducted to detect failures and defects appeared on the existing culverts. The results revealed that seepage of water through the embankment and foundation of the culverts leads to excessive erosion and scouring causing sever failures and damages. The design mistakes and poor construction were detected as the main causes of culverts failures. For sustainability of the culverts, various remedial measures are recommended to be considered in urgent rehabilitation of the existing crossings.
Paper Detail
536
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86
10004839
Investigation of Different Stimulation Patterns to Reduce Muscle Fatigue during Functional Electrical Stimulation
Abstract:

Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is a commonly used technique in rehabilitation and often associated with rapid muscle fatigue which becomes the limiting factor in its applications. The objective of this study is to investigate the effects on the onset of fatigue of conventional synchronous stimulation, as well as asynchronous stimulation that mimic voluntary muscle activation targeting different motor units which are activated sequentially or randomly via multiple pairs of stimulation electrodes. We investigate three different approaches with various electrode configurations, as well as different patterns of stimulation applied to the gastrocnemius muscle: Conventional Synchronous Stimulation (CSS), Asynchronous Sequential Stimulation (ASS) and Asynchronous Random Stimulation (ARS). Stimulation was applied repeatedly for 300 ms followed by 700 ms of no-stimulation with 40 Hz effective frequency for all protocols. Ten able-bodied volunteers (28±3 years old) participated in this study. As fatigue indicators, we focused on the analysis of Normalized Fatigue Index (NFI), Fatigue Time Interval (FTI) and pre-post Twitch-Tetanus Ratio (ΔTTR). The results demonstrated that ASS and ARS give higher NFI and longer FTI confirming less fatigue for asynchronous stimulation. In addition, ASS and ARS resulted in higher ΔTTR than conventional CSS. In this study, we proposed a randomly distributed stimulation method for the application of FES and investigated its suitability for reducing muscle fatigue compared to previously applied methods. The results validated that asynchronous stimulation reduces fatigue, and indicates that random stimulation may improve fatigue resistance in some conditions.

Paper Detail
613
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85
10005024
Ethnographic Exploration of Elderly Residents' Perceptions and Utilization of Health Care to Improve Their Quality of Life
Abstract:
The increase in proportion of older people in Malaysia has led to a significant growth of health care demands. The aim of this study is to explore how perceived health care needs influence on quality of life among elderly Malay residents who reside in a Malaysian residential home. This study employed a method known as ethnographic research from May 2011 to January 2012. Four data collection strategies were selected as the main data-collecting tools including participant observation, field notes, in-depth interviews, and review of related documents. The nine knowledgeable participants for the present study were selected using the purposive sampling method. Two themes were identified: (1) Medical concerns: Feeling secure, lack of information, inadequate medical staff; and (2) Health promotion: Body condition, health education, physiotherapy and rehabilitation. These results could evoke the attention of policy-makers and care providers to better meet elderly residents’ health care needs.
Paper Detail
783
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84
10004618
Structural Health Monitoring of Buildings and Infrastructure
Abstract:

Structures such as buildings, bridges, dams, wind turbines etc. need to be maintained against various factors such as deterioration, excessive loads, environment, temperature, etc. Choosing an appropriate monitoring system is important for determining any critical damage to a structure and address that to avoid any adverse consequence. Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) has emerged as an effective technique to monitor the health of the structures. SHM refers to an ongoing structural performance assessment using different kinds of sensors attached to or embedded in the structures to evaluate their integrity and safety to help engineers decide on rehabilitation measures. Ability of SHM in identifying the location and severity of structural damages by considering any changes in characteristics of the structures such as their frequency, stiffness and mode shapes helps engineers to monitor the structures and take the most effective corrective actions to maintain their safety and extend their service life. The main objective of this study is to review the overall SHM process specifically determining the natural frequency of an instrumented simply-supported concrete beam using modal testing and finite element model updating.

Paper Detail
934
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83
10003806
Effect of Organizational Resources on Improving Independency of People with Severe Disabilities: Vocational Rehabilitation Facilities in South Korea
Authors:
Abstract:

This paper discusses an analysis of how the characteristics of resources at vocational rehabilitation facilities for the disabled affect the improvement of independency skills among people with severe disabilities. The analysis results indicate that more internal financial resources and more connections to local communities among network resources had greater effects on improving the independency of people with severe disabilities. Based on this result, this paper presents strategies for mobilizing resources to improve the independency of people with severe disabilities at vocational rehabilitation facilities.

Paper Detail
663
downloads
82
10003354
Influence of High Temperature and Humidity on Polymer Composites Used in Relining of Sewage
Abstract:

Some of the main causes for degradation of polymeric materials are thermal aging, hydrolysis, oxidation or chemical degradation by acids, alkalis or water. The first part of this paper provides a brief summary of advances in technology, methods and specification of composite materials for relining as a rehabilitation technique for sewage systems. The second part summarizes an investigation on frequently used composite materials for relining in Sweden, the rubber filled epoxy composite and reinforced polyester composite when they were immersed in deionized water or in dry conditions, and elevated temperatures up to 80°C in the laboratory. The tests were conducted by visual inspection, microscopy, Dynamic Mechanical Analysis (DMA), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) as well as mechanical testing, three point bending and tensile testing.

Paper Detail
996
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