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Topic: Push pull gage / Weight of pull (Read 181 times) previous topic - next topic

hibey

I am looking to design a product to protect nurses and therapist who have to transfer patients from beds to wheelchairs all day long.

The general rule of thumb for transferring a patient is to not exceeding lifting more then 35 pounds, for that puts to much risk to a persons body and can result in a lower back injury.

In transferring a patient a nurse or therapist often uses what is called a gait belt or transfer belt.  It is wrapped around the patients body and the nurse then lifts the patient up with this belt to move them.

I want to design something that could register the amount of pull being applied to the belt and then beeps or warns somehow when it exceeds 35 pounds of pull on the belt. 

The only idea I can come up with is a push pull gage that is somehow linked to a arduino that then can read how much is being pulled.

I am open for any ideas or suggestions people might have in this manner. Help help help!!

CrossRoads

Seems a little overkill. Anyone above a very young toddler will exceed that weight.  Just supply a tape measure - any child longer/taller than 3 feet needs to have the gait belt used:
http://www.babycenter.com/0_your-childs-size-and-growth-timeline_10357633.bc
Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years.  Screw Shield for Mega/Due/Uno,  Bobuino with ATMega1284P, & other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  my website.

DaveEvans

#2
Sep 20, 2016, 09:26 pm Last Edit: Sep 20, 2016, 09:37 pm by DaveEvans
The only idea I can come up with is a push pull gage that is somehow linked to a arduino that then can read how much is being pulled
Why are you using the term "push pull"?  You can't "push" a gait belt.

To determine (approximately) the tension in a gait/transfer belt, you might be able to embed something like this in the belt and then monitor it with an Arduino...such as a Lilypad.  Alternatively, a short section of the belt (or the buckle?) could contain a real load cell or strain gages that could be monitored by an Arduino.

Patent Pending.  >:(

PS: By the way, the tension in the belt will not be equal to the force of the pull exerted by the nurse.  Determining the force of pull from the belt tension will not be easy to determine, since it depends on the geometry of the belt and the geometry will be highly variable (depends on the patient/belt diameter and how tight the belt is before the pull is applied).  To get around that problem, you could design a handle that attaches to the belt, and monitor the tension in the connection between the handle and the belt.  Patent Pending. >:(

PPS: the proper terminology to use in your title is "force of pull," not "weight of pull."

CrossRoads

Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years.  Screw Shield for Mega/Due/Uno,  Bobuino with ATMega1284P, & other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  my website.

ad2049q

Where did you get that " < 35lb " specification ?
Two nurses regularly have to get a >100kg person from a bed to a trolley.  Their stress monitor is the nerves in their own backs, which gives realtime haptic feedback.  It is mainly by good practical training and trolley height adjustment that they can minimise their load to that of rolling the patient rather than lifting.

A bigger menace to the backs of medical staff than lack of more bleeping stress monitors is an increase in the number of patients too obese to fit through an unmodified doorway.  Would it be correct to surcharge those ones if they are to be dug out, trucked off to hospital, X-rayed in the special high kV vetinary scanner in the large mammals section of the zoo and require other non-standard additional care ?

Now you'll like this one : go and find some off duty nurses who'll discuss what they really want.  Try asking them what they'd think of an EMP to shut up all those bleeps on the ward.

hibey

#5
Sep 20, 2016, 11:59 pm Last Edit: Sep 21, 2016, 12:05 am by hibey
Seems a little overkill. Anyone above a very young toddler will exceed that weight.  Just supply a tape measure - any child longer/taller than 3 feet needs to have the gait belt used:
http://www.babycenter.com/0_your-childs-size-and-growth-timeline_10357633.bc
I think there might be some confusion on what exactly I'm trying to make.

I'm basically just trying to make an advanced version of a gait belt.  A gait belt is regularly used to transfer patients in a hospital or nursing home and help them with mobility on the fly. 

I want to design a simple way to monitor when a nurse or therapist is lifting more then they should be in the work setting (35 pounds).

I know there are simple ways to measure that weight, but I want a gait belt to be able to have that ability to weight a person as a safety measure for patients and providers.

Hang a fish scale or a luggage scale between one end of the belt and the lifting device, examples:
https://www.amazon.com/Moobom-Portable-Backlit-Display-Digital/dp/B01A6KH98Y/ref=sr_1_2?s=hunting-fishing&ie=UTF8&qid=1474401076&sr=1-2

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00Z4TNHG6?psc=1
As far as the fish scale idea, I like it if it could some how be adapted to do the same thing, but on a gait belt in some fashion. As in, it would measure the weight of pull but would be able to do so on a gait belt without getting in the way of the actual use of the belt.

hibey

Why are you using the term "push pull"?  You can't "push" a gait belt.

To determine (approximately) the tension in a gait/transfer belt, you might be able to embed something like this in the belt and then monitor it with an Arduino...such as a Lilypad.  Alternatively, a short section of the belt (or the buckle?) could contain a real load cell or strain gages that could be monitored by an Arduino.

Patent Pending.  >:(

PS: By the way, the tension in the belt will not be equal to the force of the pull exerted by the nurse.  Determining the force of pull from the belt tension will not be easy to determine, since it depends on the geometry of the belt and the geometry will be highly variable (depends on the patient/belt diameter and how tight the belt is before the pull is applied).  To get around that problem, you could design a handle that attaches to the belt, and monitor the tension in the connection between the handle and the belt.  Patent Pending. >:(

PPS: the proper terminology to use in your title is "force of pull," not "weight of pull."
Could a load cell or strain gage be used on a fabric material (gait belt)?  I was looking into those and it appeared to me to that those were used for metals.

Also the handles on a gait belt is a great idea.  They do make gait belts with handles, it would just be a matter of once again figuring out how to determine the pull on those handles.  Would the conductive rubber cord be able to measure that pull on a handle?

hibey

Where did you get that " < 35lb " specification ?
Two nurses regularly have to get a >100kg person from a bed to a trolley.  Their stress monitor is the nerves in their own backs, which gives realtime haptic feedback.  It is mainly by good practical training and trolley height adjustment that they can minimise their load to that of rolling the patient rather than lifting.

A bigger menace to the backs of medical staff than lack of more bleeping stress monitors is an increase in the number of patients too obese to fit through an unmodified doorway.  Would it be correct to surcharge those ones if they are to be dug out, trucked off to hospital, X-rayed in the special high kV vetinary scanner in the large mammals section of the zoo and require other non-standard additional care ?

Now you'll like this one : go and find some off duty nurses who'll discuss what they really want.  Try asking them what they'd think of an EMP to shut up all those bleeps on the ward.
"Manual lifting can cause micro-injuries to the spine. Although workers may not feel the effects immediately, cumulative micro-injuries can result in a debilitating injury. Experts recommend that lifts be limited to 35 pounds or less. Good health and strength may actually put workers at increased risk because their peers are much more likely to seek their assistance when manually lifting patients." -OSHA

I completely agree that medical staff are lifting far more weight then they should be and is creating a unsafe environment for both staff and patients.  Hence, why I am looking to create a device that could help protect people and create a safer environment for everyone.

TomGeorge

Hi,
This is a gait belt;

https://www.drugs.com/cg/how-to-use-a-gait-belt.html



Tom... :)
Everything runs on smoke, let the smoke out, it stops running....

DaveEvans

#9
Sep 21, 2016, 01:58 am Last Edit: Sep 21, 2016, 02:01 am by DaveEvans
Could a load cell or strain gage be used on a fabric material (gait belt)?  I was looking into those and it appeared to me to that those were used for metals.
In my experience, they are usually used with metals - that's why I suggested the conductive rubber cord in the gait belt.  But, as I mentioned, I can envision short metal insert in a gait belt (or made part of the buckle) that could use strain gauges.  Note that the "conductive rubber cord in the belt" idea would have issues, too: the gait belt fabric would have to stretch enough to allow the cord to change length (so that its resistance would change a measurable amount).  The typical gait belts I've seen (look like cotton fabric) aren't very stretchy.  But I understand that there might be a move away from cloth belts (since they're hard to sanitize).  Either way, there is the problem that gait belt tension is not necessarily equal to pulling force...not by a long shot, in some cases.


Also the handles on a gait belt is a great idea.  They do make gait belts with handles, it would just be a matter of once again figuring out how to determine the pull on those handles.  Would the conductive rubber cord be able to measure that pull on a handle?
It depends.  Probably a load cell or strain gauges (a la electronic fish scales) would be more appropriate, but the devil is in the details of the handles and their connection to the belt.

hibey

In my experience, they are usually used with metals - that's why I suggested the conductive rubber cord in the gait belt.  But, as I mentioned, I can envision short metal insert in a gait belt (or made part of the buckle) that could use strain gauges.  Note that the "conductive rubber cord in the belt" idea would have issues, too: the gait belt fabric would have to stretch enough to allow the cord to change length (so that its resistance would change a measurable amount).  The typical gait belts I've seen (look like cotton fabric) aren't very stretchy.  But I understand that there might be a move away from cloth belts (since they're hard to sanitize).  Either way, there is the problem that gait belt tension is not necessarily equal to pulling force...not by a long shot, in some cases.

It depends.  Probably a load cell or strain gauges (a la electronic fish scales) would be more appropriate, but the devil is in the details of the handles and their connection to the belt.

I love the idea of using the technology of a luggage scale since there are gait belts that use a buckle strap.  As you said though the real issue is determining how to attach it.  Would you think it would be possible to use the technology of the luggage scale on a handle on a gait belt?

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