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VWN Resource Database: Prosthetic Pieces
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Resource Database > Prosthetic Pieces
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Locomotion | Neuroprosthetics | Levelling the Field | Enforcement Robotics
 
If the pieces of your body you were born with, don?t work properly, why not swap them out for artificial replacements that do? Artificial arms, artificial legs. Artificial ears, artificial livers. Whole exoskeletons, bringing mobility to those without.


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Prosthetic Senses (9)

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Biohacking
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Are prosthetics Obsolete? Priced out of The Heal Game
Modern limb prosthetics are quite amazing. The sudden need for large quantities of replacement limbs, born out of recent, bizarre wars such as the US-Iraq mess, has kick-started the prosthetic industry. Only problem is, they are not cheap to make.

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Large Image Display: The Stepford Wives: Immunity to Fire
The temperature problem is a major issue for actual prosthetics. Not being at all aware when your arm is on fire, is a very bad - and potentially expensive - possibility for any user of a modern prosthetic, even one tied into the nervous system.

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New Implant Promises Prosthetic Near-Natural Hearing
We finally understand enough about the way sound signals are processed into electrical signals, to go one better than the cochlea implant. We can tap directly into the auditory nerve itself.

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The Dawn of 3D Printed Prosthetics
In a previous article, Are prosthetics Obsolete? Priced out of The Heal Game, we took a look at the state of the prosthetics industry, which is in a state of disrepair due to costs. This article examines one possible solution to the spiraling cost of prosthetics, already being implemented.

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The Future of Human Enhancement
An interview with Nick Bostrom, the director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University, and how he believes it's time to open the ethical debate surrounding human enhancement.

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Two Artificial Corneas Promise to Restore Sight
In response to the increasing difficulty of finding donors for cornea replacements, and the thousands-long waiting lists that are building up in every country, German researchers have created two artificial corneas - one dumb, one smart - which look to fill the void and repair sight for many.

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Using RFID to Monitor Implants
A biodegradable, edible RFID chip, hoped to be swallowed and tracked through the stomach, may actually have a far wider range of applications than the one aimed at.

The Explorer 500 P is a hearing assist device, designed specifically for children and infants. Unlike traditional hearing aids, it employs substantial artificial intelligence software that enables its functionality to grow with the child, maximising development potential for children with hearing disorders.





Prosthetic Limbs (50)

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Smart ProstheticTargeted Muscle Re-Innervation
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5 Year old Gains Prosthetic Legs
A five year old British girl who had her all of her outer limbs amputated due to meningitis has become the youngest person to benefit from a pair of intelligent prosthetic legs.

A primer on limb prosthetics, is designed as a scientific aside, almost a technical manual for how life with a prosthetic will change, going into a great deal of detail on each kind of prosthetic, using medical and general notational jargon, as it discusses each joint?s prosthetisement, in a clinical, step by step manner.



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Amputee Makes Olympic - Not Paralympic - History
Oscar Pistorius made Olympic history on On Saturday the 4th of August 2012. During the London Olympic games he became the first double leg amputee to compete in the men's 400m running event - and qualify for the semi-finals.

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Are prosthetics Obsolete? Priced out of The Heal Game
Modern limb prosthetics are quite amazing. The sudden need for large quantities of replacement limbs, born out of recent, bizarre wars such as the US-Iraq mess, has kick-started the prosthetic industry. Only problem is, they are not cheap to make.

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Augmented reality device helps multiple sclerosis patients walk
Researchers from the Technion Institute of Technology in Israel have crafted a wearable augmented reality immersion apparatus designed to provide patients suffering from balance disorders with supplemental auditory and visual information to restore normal gait.

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Augmented Reality Hip Replacement
Usually, creation of a prosthetic limb errs on the lighter side, sacrificing capability for lightness. This is because until now, it has not been possible to examine the surviving bone in enough detail to safely screw a prosthetic into the bone.

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Do It Yourself: Prosthetic Limbs
In 2004, Mark Lesak, a Tasmanian male and electronics engineer, was involved in a car accident. It saw his right arm torn from his body. The remaining twisted wreck had to be amputated, and the entire shoulder joint had to go. This left him in a pickle, as without a shoulder joint, no existing prosthetic arm would graft to his body.

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Do we have the technology to build a bionic human?
This July 2008 NewScientist article takes a look at the state of the art in prosthetics, and asks which of our body parts can be engineered today, and which will we have to make do with?

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Does Function Have to Follow Form in Prosthetics?
Why do prosthetic body parts have to limit themselves to copying the original organic components? When a large part of a person's body is synthetic, shouldn't they be free to express it, however they choose?

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Energy Recycling, Lighter Robo Legs
Humans are able to naturally recycle about 40% of the energy in a springy step. If this can be accomplished in artificial legs, then the motors and batteries will not have to be quite as large and heavy, making life easier for developers and potential future users of the technologies, such as exoskeletons, prosthetic limbs, robots and other artificial substrate locomotion devices.

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First woman fitted with bionic arm
Industry News

Ex-Marine Claudia Mitchell lost her arm in a motorcycle accident two years ago. Since then, she struggled with life with one arm. Standard prosthetic limbs gave a cosmetic limb, but added nothing to her quality of life. Now, she is the first human trial of a bionic arm, developed at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

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Fitting Prosthetics Snugly over Time
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Surface Engineering and Thin Films IST in Braunschweig, Germany have developed a sensor system that fits into a prosthesis to analyse gait over time.


A look at prosthetic developments that have truly made a marked difference, in 2007.


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Infection-Proof Prosthetic Paw
A Belgian German Shepard dog called Storm, has become the first person to be fitted with a prosthetic implant which fits into the bone and sticks through the skin with no risk of infection to the animal.

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Large Image Display: Prosthetic Jaw Hinging
One of the most important aspects when working with any skeletal system, is the joint where bones connect. If you don't get this area right, then bone will grind against prosthesis, and the bone is likely to take critical damage first. You inflame a joint, that did not have a problem in the first place, and spread further complications throughout the body.

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Monkeys Treat Robot Arm as Their Own
Industry News

Industry news, originally posted 16-05-2005. Rather than simply manipulating a robotic device, an organic brain incorporates a robotic limb as though it was born with it attached.

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No bionic people yet, but war fuelling new advancements in prosthetics
A pair of interviews with Adele Fifield, head of the National Amputee Centre for The War Amps in Ottawa, and Kevin Englehart at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton, home to one of North America's most advanced prosthetic research facilities.

Linked resource
Open-Source Thinking Revolutionizes Prosthetic Limbs
In a Scientific American article, Iraq veteran Jonathan Kuniholm describes how his Open Prosthetics Project (OPP) is using open-source methodologies to bring enhanced prosthetics to the masses.

This is a physical therapy based book, in its second edition. It attempts to provide all the essential information required to make accurate judgements about orthotic/prosthetic prescription and fabrication to give readers a foundation for gait assessment.



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Oscar Pistorius
Oscar Pistorius was born on 22 November 1986 in Sandton, South Africa. He is an athletic sprinter, one of the fastest in the world, whose perhaps only other notable feature is that he has no legs.

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Podcast: Aimee Mullins: Running on high-tech legs
During her 2009 podcast "Aimee Mullins: How my legs give me super-powers" Aimee Mullins references her 'previous appearance at TED' 11 years prior, which changed her life and set the stage for her activities for the next decade. This is that talk.

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Podcast: DARPA and the DEKA Arm: 2009 Update
A 12 minute segment from CBS 60 minutes news program, which tours inside DARPA, looking at the current state of the DEKA prosthetic arm project. Video is up to date as of 12th April 2009.

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Podcast: Dean Kamen: New prosthetic arm for veterans
Part of a talk from TED 2007, in which Dean Kamen introduced the rationale behind, decisions leading up to and creation of the first real advance in prosthetic arms since the US civil war; the original version of the Luke Arm.

This is an edited book comprised of the works of specialists around the globe. It concentrates exclusively on myoelectrically powered upper limb prostheses ? those powered by utilising inherent electrical signals within the patient?s muscle, and as such, goes into all the detail you could ever ask for on these devices.



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Prosthetic Arms: State of the Art, 4th Q 2007
Prosthetic arm development?s rapid pace is one of the very few good things to have come out of the conflict between western societies and the Middle East. In one year, they have lept from simple claws, to arms capable of picking up a skittle and passing to the wearer?s mouth.

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Prosthetics
An introductory-level overview of the field of prosthetic limb replacement, and the level of development it is reaching.

This book is predominately a medical textbook, designed for students. However, it is a heavily illustrated tome, with detailed diagrams and explanations of lower body prosthetics lavishly slapped over a great many of its pages. It looks at when prosthetics might be necessary, and how they would be integrated into the body.



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Prosthetics as an Enablement Device: Not Yet?
This report is a response to Aimee Mullins' 2009 TED conference presentation. It is specifically concerned with her closing statements on the nature of disability and prosthetics, in 2009.

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Refining Prosthetic Legs - One Accident at a Time
When it comes to advanced prosthetic limbs - or for that matter virtual limbs relying on the same basic principles, getting the control circuitry to function properly is crucial. One of the most important aspects of said control circuitry, is the neural coding that binds the limb to the nerve impulses of the surviving ends of the peripheral nervous system.


The dream of a prosthetic limb that touches and feels like a natural limb, is still some ways away. A natural arm or leg processes sensory data at a rate we just do not have the bandwidth to recreate, much less tie into the human nervous system. That said however, significant progress has already been made, and development continues at a rapidly accelerating pace.


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Revolutionizing Prosthetics 2009 Team Delivers First DARPA Limb Prototype
An international team led by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in the US, has developed a prototype of the first fully integrated prosthetic arm that can be controlled naturally, including the provision of sensory feedback and allows for eight degrees of freedom. This is an order of magnitude beyond previous efforts, including the haptic arm of Claudia Mitchell.

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Targeted Muscle Reinnervation Increases Prosthetic BMI
A Journal of the American Medical Association study looked at targeted muscle re-innervation to see if it did indeed have as much success as studies conducted by those with a vested interest in a positive result.

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The Dawn of 3D Printed Prosthetics
In a previous article, Are prosthetics Obsolete? Priced out of The Heal Game, we took a look at the state of the prosthetics industry, which is in a state of disrepair due to costs. This article examines one possible solution to the spiraling cost of prosthetics, already being implemented.

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The Luke Arm at All Things Digital 2008
Luke Arm is named after Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, and more specifically, after the prosthetic hand the character is fitted with, that so perfectly mimics biological functionality. Within this article are three videos, showcasting the prosthetic in action, and a talk by its creator, Dean Kamen.

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Using RFID to Monitor Implants
A biodegradable, edible RFID chip, hoped to be swallowed and tracked through the stomach, may actually have a far wider range of applications than the one aimed at.

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Virtual Limbs: Living with three arms
Virtual Reality is just beginning to head down the full body sensation reproduction path. We are at the very early stages of being able to recreate parts of the physical form, entirely in the virtual. This is a concept which is likely to have very a profound effect upon how we deal with the world around us.

Developed by Ann Arbor engineers at the University of Michigan, a new (as of 2010) method of building prosthetic feet is being developed, in which the foot is able to reabsorb much of the energy of each impact. This is then transferred into power for the next step, in much the same way as the human ankle does. It looks likely that this approach may be the first such to successfully recreate the mechanics of the organic ankle.



Fluidhand is a product of the Orthopaedic University Hospital in Heidelberg, Germany. It is the first complete hand prosthesis in which each finger moves separately, without being a separate unit.



The i-Limb, made by Touch Bionics, is one of the more advanced prosthetic hands. Its makers claim its the world's most advanced bionic hand. Whilst this claim does not hold water, it is certainly, at time of release in mid 2007, one of the most advanced hands, although not the most advanced - that honour goes to a DARPA military development.



Created in 1971, the Jaipur Foot is a prosthetic for the third world. Cheap to make, locally manufactured, and completely, deliberately unpatented. Named after the small town of Jaipur where it was invented, 25 countries across the developing world use this foot.



Created in 2009, the Jaipur Knee was developed to buck the trend of high cost prosthetics, and give the possibility of a good quality, working prosthetic knee to those who need it most, regardless of their poverty level.



A product of neuroprosthetic work, the Neuro-Controlled Bionic Arm, product of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, is the first artificial limb to tap directly into the nervous system, allowing it to be moved by unconscious thought, exactly the same as the natural, original arm.



The STAR ankle - Scandinavian Total Ankle Replacement - is the product of Small Bone Innovations Inc. It is a prosthetic replacement ankle joint, that has been designed to precisely mimic the bones of the original, natural ankle, preserving the full original range of movement.



The Tensegrity foot is a simple prosthetic foot, relying on natural motion rather than mechanics to recreate the gait of a normal foot - and without the price tag of a mechanical foot to create.



The X-finger currently retails for $10,000 US$ each piece, and does not rely on any form of robotics to articulate. It fits over the stub of an amputated finger, and the wearer simply pushes against a lever with the remaining portion of their finger, which sets the knuckles into motion.



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Woman with bionic arm regains sense of touch
The art of prosthetics has moved forwards once more, and Claudia Mitchell, who lost her arm in a motorcycle accident and became the first woman to be fitted with a bionic arm has now become the first woman to be fitted with an artificial arm ? same arm ? that returns a sense of touch to her nervous system.

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You Tube of Claudia Mitchell and the first haptic, bionic arm
Ex-Marine Claudia Mitchell became the first woman to receive a bionic arm. This video shows the truly revolutionary range of motion and freedom, that allows.

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You Tube of the first haptic, bionic arm versus a non-haptic
A comparison. Two women, both with prosthetic limbs. On the left, a standard prosthetic. On the right, a haptic prosthetic giving touch feedback. Who can complete the task faster, and is there much difference?



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Exoskeletal Frames (8)

Applicable Dictionary Entries:  
Functional Electrical StimulationLower Extremity Functional Electrical Stimulation
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A Wheelchair With Ears and Brain
At MIT, researchers are working on an artificially intelligent electric wheelchair, designed to aid the least mobile individuals with navigation.

A speculative, low scientific content book, focussing on the humorous aspects of life with humanoid robots, cyborg mixtures and pure humans. It examines current technologies up to the end of 2008, and then draws conclusions about possible futures based on sci-fi in film and novels.



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NASA's X1 Exoskeletal Framework
NASA have unveiled their prototype X1 exoskeletal frame and trainer device. Unlike most exoskeletons, the key feature of this exceedingly bulky one, is that it can be used for training, just as well as enhanced walking. It is designed to inhibit muscle movement as well as enhance it; optionally forcing the wearer to work much harder for every movement.

HAL is a powered exoskeleton suit created by 48 year old Dr. Yoshiyuki Sankai of Tsukuba University, Japan.



The Tibion PK100 PowerKnee is a powered partial exoskeleton, designed to be slipped on over a weak or damaged natural leg, and augment its ability to function normally.



ReWalk iss an exoskeletal framework, based in part on recent robot gait algorithms. Its primary purpose is to allow wheelchair users to walk again - even if their own legs no-longer work.





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Artificial Organs (12)

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MICS

This dentistry prosthetics tome is an attempt to bring the latest in research, diagnostic tools, treatment planning, implant designs, materials, and techniques for prosthetising the mouth, to the attention of practitioners, and support staff. It is also a healthy read for anyone working on tooth prosthesis, or who has considerable use of such.



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Flexing, clear computer components
In an augmented world, you may well have one or more of three distinct types of computer interface on, or even in your body. There are augmenting reality devices, prosthetic components, and direct-wired virtual reality interfaces. All three share aspects in common. Among them, that they all require considerable computing power as close to the implant as possible.

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Form Fitting Prosthetics Using DICOM Data
The LayerWise jaw, fitted to its first and last human patient. It is a first in prosthetics, because it was tailor made to the skull of the patient who so badly needed it, and the last one ever to be made to fit that skull.

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Implant Can filter Cancer Cells
Industry News

Cornell University researcher Michael King has developed a novel prosthetic device. An extra ?organ? for the body which basically removes free-floating cancer cells from the bloodstream, impeding their chances of setting up shop elsewhere in the body.

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Large Image Display: Connecting Teeth to Artificial Bone
A much more in-depth look at the concept of designing multiple implants inside the body, so you can guarantee they will always connect perfectly, as demonstrated by the prototype LayerWise jaw and its successive implants.

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Large Image Display: Teeth Designed for Prosthetic Jaws
The difficulties of implanting a prosthesis deep into the body don't end when the prosthetic is in-place and working. You have to think about the systems that depended on the piece that was removed, to function properly. In the case of a prosthetic jaw, what do you do about the teeth?

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Large Image Display: The Layerwise Jaw
The LayerWise Jaw was created by a collaboration between several disparate labs and private firms The jaw itself is a unique one-off that will never be recreated. However, it is the technology behind the jaw that makes it so special - as it allows custom designed jawbones and other skeletal structures, tailored to the body structure of each patient.

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Medicine Management via Bodypart
One idea new to drug dispensation, is not to dispense the drug at all. Instead, take a leaf out of drip solutions. Anchor the dispenser to part of the patient, let it become a part of their body and, every time a dose is required, it dispenses straight into the digestive tract, or, even straight into the bloodstream.

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Powering The Augmented Form
Virtual reality environments tying directly into the neurons of the human brain. Worlds offering a better life, a happier life, providing feedback directly to your body. Embedded medical devices, feeding streams of wireless data to the home hospital; constantly regulating your bodily systems. How are they going to be powered?

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Using RFID to Monitor Implants
A biodegradable, edible RFID chip, hoped to be swallowed and tracked through the stomach, may actually have a far wider range of applications than the one aimed at.

The Hyper IMS system is a prosthetic implant designed to track and monitor a person's blood pressure in real time. Designed to reduce the need for continual doctor visits, unnecessary drugs and stress, the prosthetic organ is implanted directly into the femoral artery in the groin. There, it monitors blood pressure thirty times a minute.





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Fighting Rejection (3)

From the fascinating title, this book might come across as something to do with the encroaching issues of how prosthetic body parts intermix with security concerns. This is not what the book is about. Instead, it is a weighty tome dealing with tracking how prosthetics affect the health of the general public.




Augmenting or upgrading the body via the attachment of prosthetic limbs, new organs, neuroprosthetic devices, and integrated computer circuitry is fundamental to so many of the ways technology is changing the way we view the world, the limitations we face, and the effects of major injury. In order to do the most good, there are three critical issues we have got to overcome:


Surprisingly, whilst a great deal has been written about device implantation and adjustment, very little has been penned about how these patients should be dealt with, post operation, in living with their prosthesis. That gap is where this tome comes in. It tries to fill the void gap by providing an in-depth analysis of practices for managing patients from a slew of case studies from experts around the globe. Helping to show what works and what does not.





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Prosthetic Construction Materials (6)

As materials science evolves, our initially seemingly limited choices of materials with which to create prosthetics integrated with the body, continue to expand. As the range and choice increases, we see from yet another angle, the rearing head of the probing question: “when does a replacement limb exceed the capabilities of the original?”
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Artificial Hydroapatite
Hydroapatite is a naturally occurring mineral. It is a form of calcium apatite and makes up around 70% of the internal structure of human bones and teeth. Lightweight, strong, and flexible, it is an ideal material for supporting active limbs.

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Biodegradable Integrated circuits - Transient Electronics
A fully biodegradable type of integrated circuit has been developed. Intended for implantation into the body, it is a class of circuitry which, if its protective shell is ruptured; dissolves quickly and completely in the body's fluids.

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Flexible Power for Prosthetics
Providing power for prosthetic devices has always been somewhat of a tricky endeavour, frought with compromises. Battery packs are heavy, cumbersome and heat up quite significantly. They have to be carefully placed, to avoid upsetting balance, and the weight offset by stripping out material elsewhere.

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Implant Coating to Revolutionise Prosthetics
As is well known, the greatest difficulty with prosthetic implants that invade the body, is the material that comes into contact with the flesh of an organic form. If it is too smooth, flesh does not bond with it well, and it slips. Too rugged and it becomes a nesting ground for bacteria. That's not even touching on the immune reaction if the material is the wrong type and is seen as a threat.

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Potential Power Source for Implants and Health Concern
Ongoing research into potential piezoelectric power sources for smart prosthetics turned up a powerful - and deadly - candidate in a polymer that is already used for many cosmetic implants. silicon polymer is a fantastic source of energy when squeezed. However, it also damages the organic cells around it each time this occurs.

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Shape Memory Materials, Simulation and Prosthetics
Shape memory alloys are composite materials which can 'remember' a given shape or form, and revert back to it when a charge is passed through them, or they are warmed past a critical point, or another condition is met. They deform then reform, essentially flowing like organic tissue without actually being organic.



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Augmenting or Altering Original Organs (6)

Sometimes an organ is not failing and needing a prosthetic to function (like a heart with a pacemaker), but it would still be nice if it worked a little better, stronger. That is where this type of prosthetic comes in to play, to take an existing, functional organ and improve it, or repurpose part of it to a function other than that originally intended.
Applicable Dictionary Entries:  
Anti BioismBioism
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Large Image Display: Making a Bespoke Jaw
The making of a bespoke prosthetic jaw from a patient's existing medical data is one of those things that seems both easy and obvious on the surface, but one which is frought with implementation issues when you get right down to it. Could it really be as simple as laying down on a CT bed, and letting the computer do the rest?

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Large Image Display: The Stepford Wives: A Cash Machine Spouse
In the film, this is the first time we meet one of the cyborg women for what they really are - what they have become. Almost mindless, controlled robots. This repeats the message that any upgrade, or augment to the body and to the brain must always be consented to by the person receiving it, with full implications understood. If it is not, you risk turning a person into what is seen here: An appliance of convenience.

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Using a CAVE to Model Blood Flow in Children
The Star CAVE is the newest generation of CAVE VR interfaces. We have looked at the technology before. Now, it is time to take an in-depth look at the use of one to create flow simulations for personalised healthcare. Creating customised heart pumps for infants and small children, which don't cause as much clotting as anything else available.

For those of us who experience a monthly visitor, devices such as this are long overdue. The period reliever is not in the strictest sense a prosthetic device, as it does not have to be implanted. It can be, but does not have to be. Still, its function is to augment your period, and reduce or remove both pain and bloating.





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Prosthetic Bones (7)

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Better Lubricant Leads to Longer-Lasting Bone Implants
One of the greatest problems with prosthetic parts, is that artificial parts don't self-repair. This means that in the case of non-essential prosthetics such as bones, a patient usually outlives their prosthesis. They require the time, expense, and recuperation of additional new joint surgeries at least once per decade. It would be better to make the first prosthetic strong enough to outlive the patient.

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Form Fitting Prosthetics Using DICOM Data
The LayerWise jaw, fitted to its first and last human patient. It is a first in prosthetics, because it was tailor made to the skull of the patient who so badly needed it, and the last one ever to be made to fit that skull.

Locally Hosted resource
Hydroxyapatite Bone Grafts
Pennsylvania State University researcher Henry J. Donahue, Professor of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Penn State College of Medicine, has found a use for the inorganic material hydroxyapatite, in covering sterilized implants so that they form a natural bond with on-site bone, fusing together over time.

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Large Image Display: Making a Bespoke Jaw
The making of a bespoke prosthetic jaw from a patient's existing medical data is one of those things that seems both easy and obvious on the surface, but one which is frought with implementation issues when you get right down to it. Could it really be as simple as laying down on a CT bed, and letting the computer do the rest?

Locally Hosted resource
Large Image Display: Prosthetic Jaw Hinging
One of the most important aspects when working with any skeletal system, is the joint where bones connect. If you don't get this area right, then bone will grind against prosthesis, and the bone is likely to take critical damage first. You inflame a joint, that did not have a problem in the first place, and spread further complications throughout the body.

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Large Image Display: Teeth Designed for Prosthetic Jaws
The difficulties of implanting a prosthesis deep into the body don't end when the prosthetic is in-place and working. You have to think about the systems that depended on the piece that was removed, to function properly. In the case of a prosthetic jaw, what do you do about the teeth?

Locally Hosted resource
Large Image Display: The Layerwise Jaw
The LayerWise Jaw was created by a collaboration between several disparate labs and private firms The jaw itself is a unique one-off that will never be recreated. However, it is the technology behind the jaw that makes it so special - as it allows custom designed jawbones and other skeletal structures, tailored to the body structure of each patient.