Artificial Hand

by ANDRE RAYGOZA

Staff Writer

Great news is to be heard in the field of medical science, they are steps closer to making a hand that can feel the sensation of touches. Scientists implanted electrodes in some amputees to let them get used to the new feeling that these scientists have given them. Letting them practice, getting used to it by letting them pluck fruit without crushing it.

Two researchers at Case Western Reserve University said that wiring some of their remaining nerves to the robotic arms felt that they could actually grab something with their own hand instead of feeling like they are grabbing something with a tool of some sort.

There was an unexpected benefit that has been discovered since they have been doing these experiments; the phantom pain that people feel after losing their limbs in industrial accidents, has been fading and nearly disappearing to the point where they sense no pain at all.

It will take years of work before the robotic hands actually let them feel the full sensation of touching things, but this research is essential to help people who miss the sensation of touching things.

The whole process of how they allow the robotic limbs make the person feel the sensation of touch, is they wire snake under the skin. Scientists hook the patients up to a machine that sends electrical signals between the stump and a prosthetic hand. Sensors on the hand can give a sense of touch from 16 to 19 spots, at first it would feel like electrical tingles, but they would get used to that sensation.

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