U&O srl

Project Key Data

Full title of the project:
PUlmonary Rehabilitation with O-RAGT platform

Short name of the project:

Date of the award:
May 2022

Project duration:
9 months

Lead Company:
U&O srl (Italy)

Project Partner(s):

IRCCS Fondazione Don Carlo Gnocchi (Italy) RRD – Roessingh Research and Development (Netherlands) Fundación Hospital Nacional de Parapléjicos (Spain) Rehabilitation Department Hospital of LUHS (Lithuanian University of Health Sciences ) (Lithuania)


As stated by WHO, “COVID-19 creates significant challenges for rehabilitation services around the world. Rehabilitation services are consistently amongst the health services most severely disrupted by the pandemic ” COVID-19, especially when hospitalization was required, often has long-lasting consequences, that imply a specific rehabilitation process.

Shared guidelines for rehabilitation of patients affected by COVID-19 are under study, but the main objectives are identified: improving respiratory dynamics, increasing muscle strength, restoring cardio-pulmonary endurance and counteracting joint stiffness, important for limiting complications and disabilities, especially in older people or with comorbidity.

The aim of the project is the deployment of PURO platform as a “proof of concept” in post-COVID-19 cardio-respiratory rehabilitation in a clinical setting; the platform is composed by an over ground exoskeleton for Robot Assisted Gait Training (TRL9), an actuated walker (TRL7) and a sensor kit (TRL9). The exoskeleton has the potential to add value to cardio-respiratory rehabilitation, reducing the walking effort, allowing severely affected subjects to walk below 3 MET (value for walking at moderate intensity), the established cut-off for severely affected post COVID-19. Additionally, for those that are less severely affected, PURO can help decreasing fatigue and enabling to spend more time/effort in strength and cardiovascular training. This is especially relevant in those that have acquired weakness after COVID-19/ICU admittance, broadening the population PURO could address.

The combined use of all the modules, opens a wider clinical application of PURO: the walker allows the healthcare operator to manage with no effort the user’s stability during orthostasis, sit-to-stand and walking, reducing the cognitive exertion and metabolic patient’s energy expenditure. The wearable sensors monitor in real time vital parameters, giving the healthcare operator a precise picture of the patient’s effort during the training and evolution, as recommended by guidelines form different countries.

The advantages of the PURO for post COVID-19 cardiorespiratory rehabilitation are also applicable to this type of rehabilitation in other diseases, thus, the clinical goals identified by PURO can be also assessed in other scenarios, increasing the clinical impact of our solution.

U&O as manufacturer will finalize the integration of the technological platform and will provide it to the end-users that will then deploy the “proof of concept” and usability of PURO in pilot studies (case reports), testing the applicability of innovative cardio-respiratory rehabilitation protocols (interval training, constant load and/or constant time) aimed at increasing exercise capacity, compared to traditional non robotic therapy.