Relax and tighten—a haptics-based approach to simulate sphincter tone assessment

Alejandro Granados*, Luc Maréchal, Alastair Barrow, George Petrou, Christine Norton, Fernando Bello

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contributionpeer-review


Digital Rectal Examination (DRE) is a physical examination performed by clinicians to diagnose anorectal and prostate abnormalities. Amongst these, sphincter tone assessment is a crucial task where a clinician asks the patient to relax or squeeze, whilst measuring its function by the amount of pressure felt on the examining finger. DRE is difficult to learn and current models fail to reproduce the dynamic function of anorectal abnormalities. We propose a haptics-based approach to incorporate sphincter tone into our current simulator by motor-controlled pulling and releasing of cables that are coiled around a silicone model of the sphincters. A range of healthy and abnormal sphincter tone cases can be modelled by controlling the motors symmetrically and asymmetrically.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHaptic Interaction - Science, Engineering and Design
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9789811041563
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event2nd international conference, AsiaHaptics 2016 - Chiba, Japan
Duration: 29 Nov 20161 Dec 2016

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Electrical Engineering
ISSN (Print)18761100
ISSN (Electronic)18761119


Conference2nd international conference, AsiaHaptics 2016


  • Diagnosis
  • Haptics
  • Learning
  • Rectal examination
  • Sphincter
  • Teaching


Dive into the research topics of 'Relax and tighten—a haptics-based approach to simulate sphincter tone assessment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this