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Journal of Healthcare Engineering
Volume 2016, Article ID 1048964, 10 pages
Review Article

A Systematic Review on Existing Measures for the Subjective Assessment of Rehabilitation and Assistive Robot Devices

Technological Educational Institute of Athens, Department of Informatics, Agiou Spyridonos, Aigaleo, 12243 Athens, Greece

Received 27 February 2016; Revised 5 April 2016; Accepted 6 April 2016

Academic Editor: Yinkwee Ng

Copyright © 2016 Yiannis Koumpouros. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The objective of the current study is to identify and classify outcome measures currently used for the assessment of rehabilitation or assistive robot devices. We conducted a systematic review of the literature using PubMed, MEDLINE, CIRRIE, and Scopus databases for studies that assessed rehabilitation or assistive robot devices from 1980 through January 2016. In all, 31 articles met all inclusion criteria. Tailor-made questionnaires were the most commonly used tool at 66.7%, while the great majority (93.9%) of the studies used nonvalidated instruments. The study reveals the absence of a standard scale which makes it difficult to compare the results from different researchers. There is a great need, therefore, for a valid and reliable instrument to be available for use by the intended end users for the subjective assessment of robot devices. The study concludes by identifying two scales that have been validated in general assistive technology devices and could support the scope of subjective assessment in rehabilitation or assistive robots (however, with limited coverage) and a new one called PYTHEIA, recently published. The latter intends to close the gap and help researchers and developers to evaluate, assess, and produce products that satisfy the real needs of the end users.