Postural stability is achieved by maintaining an upright body alignment against gravitational force and preserving the equilibrium of the Centre of Pressure (CoP) in an individual’s base of support. Successful postural control requires contribution from a complex sensory system comprising visual, somatosensory and vestibular modalities as well as motor control systems.
Due to recent technological advances, a growing trend in balance assessments has become the monitoring of Centre of Pressure (terrestrial locomotion) (CoP), the reaction vector of the centre of mass on the ground, path length for a specified duration. The system is classified as static and dynamic postural balance system. In the static system, the platform is stable, whereas in the dynamic system the minimal CoP path length is suggestive of good balance. Laboratory-grade force plates are considered the “gold-standard” of measuring CoP.
With this in view, the Biomedical Instrumentation Group at CSIR-CSIO (Central Scientific Instruments Organisation), Chandigarh, has developed a Postural Stability System that estimates CoP, balance stability and lateral fall. Dr Dinesh Pankaj, Head Biomedical Instrumentation Group, informed that the system uses pressure mapping from five metatarsal points for accurate assessment of CoP and calculates symmetry and stability index, which give a quantified assessment of static and dynamic postural stability.
This assessment is important for patients of stroke, Parkinson’s, the elderly, etc. After an accurate assessment of postural stability, the system has 12 training modules, which use the concept of biofeedback based learning to help the patients relearn the static and dynamic balance, as informed by Dr Neelesh Kumar who is leading this development.
Dr Saini, Head, Business Initiatives & Project Planning, states that a similar imported system is available in the country at a cost of Rs 8-10 Lakh, which is prohibiting the widespread availability of the system in tier II-III cities hospitals. The CSIO developed technology is available at a significantly reduced cost up to Rs 2-3 lakhs, which supports the GOI initiatives of health for all.