Wearable for knee osteoarthritis
A wearable device to reduce knee osteoarthritis pain by teaching individuals to coordinate their muscles differently.
Toward Relief for People with Knee Osteoarthritis
In 2022, Scott Uhlrich ’16 M.S. ’20 Ph.D., the Director of Research in the Stanford Human Performance Lab, co-authored a study that showed people could learn a new way of coordinating their calf muscles using real-time biofeedback that reduces load on their knees by 12%.
The results were significant—the equivalent of someone losing about 20 percent of their body weight—and had huge implications for people with knee osteoarthritis. Nitin Parekh reached out to encourage the team to apply to the HIT Fund.
Since then, Uhlrich and co-PI Stanford Bioengineering and Orthopaedic Surgery Professor Scott Delp have been working with a Stanford GSB MBA student on a business plan and with a wearable device company on a prototype. The team expects to begin testing the device on people with knee osteoarthritis next month.
“I was very attracted by how practical the HIT Fund team was in wanting us to translate this idea out of the lab,” Uhlrich says. “Having a Stanford MBA student work on a business model and figure out the regulatory pathway and reimbursement options—that’s a huge asset, and allows us to focus on developing the technology.”