Foothill College Students 3D Print Exoskeleton Arms for Preschooler

Noel is a bright and energetic 4-year-old boy who was born with arthrogryposis, a condition where thickening and scarring of the muscle tissue left him unable to bend his arms, making it difficult to eat or dress without help. Noel adapted by arching his back to lift his arms, but his occupational therapists were concerned this would cause future back problems.

But now, thanks to help from a custom 3D printed exoskeleton, Noel uses his arms under his own power without putting his back at risk. Developed through a partnership between Noel’s occupational therapists and Foothill College in California, the exoskeleton is helping Noel gain more freedom of movement.


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Noel has more freedom of movement and independence thanks to his exoskeleton arms.

Noel has more freedom of movement and independence thanks to exoskeleton arms.

“This project made me realize I really like applying science to help people. Now I’m finally realizing what I want and I’ve never felt so certain.”

Kevin Godines, Foothill College