American and Canadian researchers have succeeded in developing a new bionic arm that, for the first time, combines motor control with sensory and kinesthetic feedback. Wearers can use it naturally, as if it were an arm rather than a prosthesis.
A new breakthrough in prosthetics will allow amputees to use a new in the United States, and in collaboration with Canadian researchers, detailed the procedure in an article published in the journal .as if it were the lost limb. A team led by researchers from the
The participants underwent asensory and motor, a procedure where the leading to the amputated limb are redirected to the remaining muscles and skin. This creates a neural interface that retains the same nerves as for the amputated limb, eliminating the need to learn how to control an amputated limb. with other muscles.
Small robots to transmit sensations
Smallplaced on the reinnervated area touch the skin to transmit sensory signals to the prosthesis, thus giving a sensation of touch. Other vibrating robots transmit kinesthetic signals, in other words the sensation of of the prosthesis. Finally, when the patient tries to move his amputated arm, the movement of the reinnervated muscles is captured and transmitted to the prosthesis.
The first results are very promising. The two patients equipped withhave managed to use it very naturally. One of the researchers, Dr Paul Marasco, indicated that they have “ made judgments, made decisions, calculated and corrected their mistakes like a person without “. Unlike a standard prosthesis, both participants did not need to constantly watch what they were doing and could easily correct mistakes, such as when pressing too hard with the hand. According to the researchers, this bionic arm should allow wearers to no longer constantly compensate for the presence of the prosthesis and allow them to “think” like a person without amputation.