Data-Driven Quantitation of Movement Abnormality after Stroke

Avinash Parnandi, Aakash Kaku, Anita Venkatesan, Natasha Pandit, Emily Fokas, Boyang Yu, Grace Kim, Dawn Nilsen, Carlos Fernandez-Granda, Heidi Schambra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Stroke commonly affects the ability of the upper extremities (UEs) to move normally. In clinical settings, identifying and measuring movement abnormality is challenging due to the imprecision and impracticality of available assessments. These challenges interfere with therapeutic tracking, communication, and treatment. We thus sought to develop an approach that blends precision and pragmatism, combining high-dimensional motion capture with out-of-distribution (OOD) detection. We used an array of wearable inertial measurement units to capture upper body motion in healthy and chronic stroke subjects performing a semi-structured, unconstrained 3D tabletop task. After data were labeled by human coders, we trained two deep learning models exclusively on healthy subject data to classify elemental movements (functional primitives). We tested these healthy subject-trained models on previously unseen healthy and stroke motion data. We found that model confidence, indexed by prediction probabilities, was generally high for healthy test data but significantly dropped when encountering OOD stroke data. Prediction probabilities worsened with more severe motor impairment categories and were directly correlated with individual impairment scores. Data inputs from the paretic UE, rather than trunk, most strongly influenced model confidence. We demonstrate for the first time that using OOD detection with high-dimensional motion data can reveal clinically meaningful movement abnormality in subjects with chronic stroke.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number648
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2023


  • deep learning
  • inertial measurement unit
  • motor impairment
  • out-of-distribution detection
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering


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