ARC vibrating pen steadies the ship for people with Parkinson's disease

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The ARC is intended to give those with Parkinson's disease greater pen control

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The development of tight, cramped cursive as a result of degenerating motor control is a common symptom of Parkinson's disease. Known as micrographia, this condition can often lead people to put down their pens forever, but a team of British engineers say there might yet be hope for sufferer's of this dispiriting ailment. Dopa Solution's ARC pen is a vibrating writing device that stimulates muscles in the hand, giving those with Parkinson's better control when putting pen to paper.

The clunky, oversized ARC mightn't look like the most comfortable of pens, but its large form is intended to make it easier to handle for people with Parkinson's disease. Packed inside are high frequency vibration motors which spur certain muscles in the hand into action to allow better control, while simultaneously making it easier for users to drag the pen across the surface of the paper.

The result, Dopa says, is larger and clearer handwriting for those that wield it. Early trials have been conducted with subjects suffering from micrographia, with the team claiming an 86 percent overall improvement in writing.

The approach bears some resemblance to the Liftware vibrating spoon, which launched back in 2013 and uses vibrations to counteract hand tremors in people with Parkinson's, making it easier to feed themselves without spilling food.

Dopa says the development of the ARC pen is ongoing and it is currently looking for financial backing and manufacturers to refine its design, along with participants for further testing.

You can check out the promotional video below.

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