A New Grip on LifeBy Ellison, Jesse; Newsweek,
Publication Date: December 15, 2008
Article discusses prosthetic innovations designed to benefit soldiers who have lost limbs in action. Dean Kamen, the inventor of the Segway transporter, in collaboration with team members at his company DEKA, has designed a strap-on, surgery-free prosthetic arm, the prototype of which will be shown to patients at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Named the “Luke Arm” for Luke Skywalker’s prosthetic hand in “Star Wars,” the prosthetic weighs no more than a human arm and can be interfaced with a control mechanism, developed at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, called “targeted reinnervation,” a device that attaches to nerves and decodes the signals that tell the components of a limb where to go, and for what purpose, such as reaching for a glass of water. With the device, amputees can also sense holding the glass and how tightly they are gripping it. Leg prostheses are also discussed, such as the Otto Bock C-Leg, which has advanced functionalities that enable amputees who wish to remain in service to stay on active duty. Features of the C-Leg described include a programmable microprocessor that makes gait more natural and aids balance. The prosthesis can also be set for different tasks such as walking, running, or riding a bike.
Assistive Products Discussed: C-LEG (MODEL 3C100)
Published by: Newsweek Inc. (Website:http://www.newsweek.com)
Link to text: http://www.newsweek.com/id/172566