Dennis Sorensen lost his left hand in a firework accident a decade ago. A faulty rocket exploded in his hand when he was celebrating New Year?s Eve. This resulted in the amputation of his hand. Since then, the 36 ? year ? old man has been using standard prosthesis for his everyday tasks. Everything changed when he participated in a study and let him feel again with a new prosthetic hand.
A team of researchers created Lifehand 2 at the Federal Institute of Technology in Switzerland. It enables amputees to feel again by going through a surgical procedure where tiny electrodes would be inserted into the arm. These electrodes provide a connection between the nerves in the arm and every finger of the hand.
The research was published in Science Translational Medicine on Wednesday. The project?s goal was to provide the amputee real ? time sensory information to improve the usefulness of prosthesis. The team was referring to the use of the body?s nerves to convey sensory information in the fingers and back to the brain.
Project Highlight: Nerves
This medical breakthrough highlights the use of nerves as a natural sensory information conveyor to give users of the bionic arm the sense of touch once again. Dennis Sorensen was the subject of this research. During the testing phase, they implanted electrodes in his arm where the amputation took places a decade ago.
Although the nerves have long been unused, the Lifehand 2 successfully sent electric signals that were recognized by his nerves. The result that involved Dennis credibly proved that the research was successful. They have seen an 88 percent accuracy in terms of differentiating shapes, while numbers on differentiating hardness of objects showed 79 percent accuracy.
A Life ? Changing Experience
Sorensen effectively managed to use force in order to grip various objects with the helped of the nerve connections. His participation in this study has helped him through his daily life by getting to feel things again. This research also proves the advancement of technology through the years by making amputees feel normal than ever.
Dennis said that he was amazed at how his new artificial hand and his brain were communicating for the first time since the accident.