First Advisor

James McNames

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Electrical and Computer Engineering


Electrical and Computer Engineering




Human mechanics, Parkinson's disease -- Diagnosis -- Evaluation, Biomechanics, Mechanical engineering



Physical Description

1 online resource (xi, 88 p.) : ill. (chiefly col.)


Parkinson's disease is a chronic neurological disorder affecting hundreds of thousands of Americans. The current best practice for assessment of this disease is a clinical examination and subjective rating using the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale. Such ratings are coarse scaled, subject to rater bias, and costly. Instruments which provide objective measurements of disease state can eliminate rater bias, provide repeatable data, and increase the frequency and responsiveness of subject assessments, expediting the validation of new therapies and treatments. This thesis describes the design and implementation of a battery of bio-mechanical devices suitable for clinical and in home use, including descriptions of the instruments and the functionality of the data acquisition software, as well as the overall system used for data collection. A data analysis algorithm is fully described, and descriptive statistics of pilot data from twenty two subjects are reported. These statistics show promising correlations of time duration metrics with the motor subsection of the UPDRS, as well as good responsiveness to dopaminergic intervention. Data also suggests that these devices have an advantage over previously described devices in the ability to record the full range of motion in standard assessment tasks, thereby providing additional metrics related to hesitations and halts in prescribed movements.


In Copyright. URI: This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).


Portland State University. Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Persistent Identifier