Pace Patient takes control with the new COAPT Complete Control Gen2.

Collaboration between leading professionals in the prosthetics and rehabilitation sector has enabled Ben Dodds to restore more natural movement with an innovative transhumeral prosthesis after he sustained a serious limb injury…

In November 2016, a routine commute to the office in London changed Ben Dodds’ life forever.

Whilst travelling to work he sustained a serious injury as a result of an incident involving a derailed tram in Croydon. This catastrophic event eventually led to the amputation of his right arm.

Ben has always been interested in technology and it’s interesting to hear his perspective in the immediate aftermath of the incident:

“When I woke after my surgery I said to my wife: I’m going to have an arm like Luke Skywalker! I have always been more interested in the function over the style of the device, but this just looks great too and I’m really proud of it. It looks really cool and works well.”

COAPT Complete Control Gen2

Introducing the COAPT Complete Control Gen2.

A team from Pace Rehabilitation, Össur, Steeper, Ortho Europe and Ottobock worked together to get Ben’s life back on track and develop the new prosthesis which is game-changing for people who have undergone an amputation – whatever the circumstances.

The COAPT Complete Control Gen2 is the latest advancement in pattern recognition control technology, which can be utilised with the Espire Pro Hybrid elbows. This add-on controller kit provides intuitive and natural movement for the user.

The Gen2 is easily incorporated and readily compatible with the Espire Elbow which Ben uses and allows his prosthesis to ‘learn’ his unique movements through pattern recognition – as opposed to the often limited capabilities of single or dual-site myoelectric control. 

The prosthesis is driven by sixteen electrodes which detect muscle signals and enable Ben to control his hand/wrist and elbow at once.

This contrasts with most devices currently on the market which utilise just two electrodes and have to manually ‘switch’ between one to the other to perform each movement, which is physically demanding, frustrating and tiring.The COAPT system allows Ben to control and move his prosthesis more intuitively and naturally.

Trials & Training

Ben underwent two myoelectric hand trials (three weeks with each), exploring the functions of both devices

“With the COAPT system, I was having to do less tensing of my muscles, which was less demanding, so I could wear the prosthesis longer, typically six hours a day.”

To maximise the functional capabilities of this cutting-edge technology, over three months Ben received occupational therapy support from Christa Wright at Pace Rehabilitation in Amersham, both in clinic and at home, along with plenty of ‘homework’ to get more familiar with controlling the sophisticated prosthetic device.

Advantages of the COAPT Complete Control Gen2

A huge advantage for Ben is not having to use his sound arm or a leg to position his arm, the powered elbow now does this for him and he can anticipate the need for these movements. Describing an example of the difference it makes, Ben says:

“One little thing I’ve noticed that makes a big difference is going through the security doors at work.  I have to tap a pass to go through, which sounds simple but when not wearing the prosthesis this meant putting down what I was carrying, using my sound limb to tap the key to the pad and then propping the door open with a foot and picking up the items from the floor, repeating this several times just to navigate to the right office or editing suite. Now, with my new arm I can just get the pass ready to go and I’m through each door in no time. It’s a game changer and makes life so much more natural.”

In terms of getting back on track Ben explains:

“I wanted to get back to work as quickly as possible and look to the future. I’m passionate about seeking out the latest technology on the market and how can it help me and other people who find themselves in the same position.”

 The wrist rotator feature is particularly useful for constructing flat pack furniture as Ben is renovating a house to move into soon.

“I like the more seamless movement the arm brings . It allows me to position myself more easily. Simple things like being able to  pick up my spectacles from a table. Its these everyday actions that have made the biggest difference with the arm. All that I need to actually ‘think’ about is carrying out the final motion to grip the object rather than positioning of the elbow, wrist and hand.”

The team that delivered the COAPT Complete Control Gen2 to Ben

Thank you to the delivery team:

  • COAPT Gen2 – Ortho Europe
  • Espire Pro elbow – Steeper
  • iLimb Quantum – Össur
  • Fillauer wrist rotator – Ortho Europe
  • Harness – Ottobock
  • Revo socket – Pace Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation Programme – Pace Rehabilitation