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Spatial and temporal influences on discrimination of vibrotactile stimuli on the arm.

Abstract

Body-machine interfaces (BMIs) provide a non-invasive way to control devices. Vibrotactile stimulation has been used by BMIs to provide performance feedback to the user, thereby reducing visual demands. To advance the goal of developing a compact, multivariate vibrotactile display for BMIs, we performed two psychophysical experiments to determine the acuity of vibrotactile perception across the arm. The first experiment assessed vibration intensity discrimination of sequentially presented stimuli within four dermatomes of the arm (C5, C7, C8, and T1) and on the ulnar head. The second experiment compared vibration intensity discrimination when pairs of vibrotactile stimuli were presented simultaneously vs. sequentially within and across dermatomes. The first experiment found a small but statistically significant difference between dermatomes C7 and T1, but discrimination thresholds at the other three locations did not differ. Thus, while all tested dermatomes of the arm and hand could serve as viable sites of vibrotactile stimulation for a practical BMI, ideal implementations should account for small differences in perceptual acuity across dermatomes. The second experiment found that sequential delivery of vibrotactile stimuli resulted in better intensity discrimination than simultaneous delivery, independent of whether the pairs were located within the same dermatome or across dermatomes. Taken together, our results suggest that the arm may be a viable site to transfer multivariate information via vibrotactile feedback for body-machine interfaces. However, user training may be needed to overcome the perceptual disadvantage of simultaneous vs. sequentially presented stimuli.

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Department of Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA. valay.shah@marquette.edu.

    ,

    Department of Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA. DIBRIS, University of Genova, Genova, Italy.

    ,

    Department of Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA. Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, USA. Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation, National Science Foundation, Alexandria, VA, USA.

    Department of Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA.

    Source

    Experimental brain research 237:8 2019 Aug pg 2075-2086

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    31175382

    Citation

    Shah, Valay A., et al. "Spatial and Temporal Influences On Discrimination of Vibrotactile Stimuli On the Arm." Experimental Brain Research, vol. 237, no. 8, 2019, pp. 2075-2086.
    Shah VA, Casadio M, Scheidt RA, et al. Spatial and temporal influences on discrimination of vibrotactile stimuli on the arm. Exp Brain Res. 2019;237(8):2075-2086.
    Shah, V. A., Casadio, M., Scheidt, R. A., & Mrotek, L. A. (2019). Spatial and temporal influences on discrimination of vibrotactile stimuli on the arm. Experimental Brain Research, 237(8), pp. 2075-2086. doi:10.1007/s00221-019-05564-5.
    Shah VA, et al. Spatial and Temporal Influences On Discrimination of Vibrotactile Stimuli On the Arm. Exp Brain Res. 2019;237(8):2075-2086. PubMed PMID: 31175382.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Spatial and temporal influences on discrimination of vibrotactile stimuli on the arm. AU - Shah,Valay A, AU - Casadio,Maura, AU - Scheidt,Robert A, AU - Mrotek,Leigh A, Y1 - 2019/06/07/ PY - 2018/12/07/received PY - 2019/05/18/accepted PY - 2019/6/9/pubmed PY - 2019/6/9/medline PY - 2019/6/9/entrez KW - Dermatomes of the arm KW - Discrimination threshold KW - Perception KW - Stimulation timing KW - Vibrotactile stimulation SP - 2075 EP - 2086 JF - Experimental brain research JO - Exp Brain Res VL - 237 IS - 8 N2 - Body-machine interfaces (BMIs) provide a non-invasive way to control devices. Vibrotactile stimulation has been used by BMIs to provide performance feedback to the user, thereby reducing visual demands. To advance the goal of developing a compact, multivariate vibrotactile display for BMIs, we performed two psychophysical experiments to determine the acuity of vibrotactile perception across the arm. The first experiment assessed vibration intensity discrimination of sequentially presented stimuli within four dermatomes of the arm (C5, C7, C8, and T1) and on the ulnar head. The second experiment compared vibration intensity discrimination when pairs of vibrotactile stimuli were presented simultaneously vs. sequentially within and across dermatomes. The first experiment found a small but statistically significant difference between dermatomes C7 and T1, but discrimination thresholds at the other three locations did not differ. Thus, while all tested dermatomes of the arm and hand could serve as viable sites of vibrotactile stimulation for a practical BMI, ideal implementations should account for small differences in perceptual acuity across dermatomes. The second experiment found that sequential delivery of vibrotactile stimuli resulted in better intensity discrimination than simultaneous delivery, independent of whether the pairs were located within the same dermatome or across dermatomes. Taken together, our results suggest that the arm may be a viable site to transfer multivariate information via vibrotactile feedback for body-machine interfaces. However, user training may be needed to overcome the perceptual disadvantage of simultaneous vs. sequentially presented stimuli. SN - 1432-1106 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31175382/Spatial_and_temporal_influences_on_discrimination_of_vibrotactile_stimuli_on_the_arm L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00221-019-05564-5 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -