Healthcare for the increasing senior population is a significant challenge. To address this problem, the use of healthcare robot is increasingly being recognized to have strong potential in addressing older adult and psychiatric patients’ healthcare and welfare needs. The purpose of this preliminary study is to evaluate the changes in the autonomic nervous activity of an elderly patient with schizophrenia during upper limb range of motion (ROM) exercises led by Pepper (SoftBank Robotics) with the application program of Care Prevention Gymnastics Exercises (Pepper-CPGE) made by Xing Company in Japan. A Pepper-CPGE-led three-minute radio gymnastics program (Radio Exercises #1, consisted of three types of exercises) and instructions were developed. The normal aging 69-year old schizophrenic subject followed instructions from Pepper throughout the intervention. Electrocardiography (ECG) records, heart rate, acceleration score, and ROM exercises of upper limb were collected and analyzed using the GSM's Bonaly Light instrument and Image-J analysis. (1) The high-frequency (HF) (indicative of parasympathetic nervous activity), and low-frequency (LF)/HF ratio (indicative of sympathetic nerve activity) were increased in reference from the baseline data before the exercise stretching the chest. (2) The momentum decreased as the ROM of shoulder joint flexion declined. Declines in both parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous activity were observed. Also, (3) when the exercise “bend the body forward” was performed, the HF and LF/HF also decreased. Evaluation of robot-based rehabilitation exercise program effectiveness by the ROM exercises image analysis and autonomic nervous activity is essential for the futurist programming of ROM exercise among patients with schizophrenia.
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