Experimental bionic hand lets user feel touch

Science -

An experimental new bionic hand uses an amputee's nerves to provide detailed sensory feedback about objects they touch.

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"This is the first time in neuroprosthetics that sensory feedback has been restored and used by an amputee in real-time to control an artificial limb." Silvestro Micera, Director of the Translational Neural Engineering Laboratory and the Institute of Bioengineering

Several European hospitals and universities worked together to produce the prosthetic hand that allowed an amputee to feel rich sensations while holding objects. The research was published Feb. 5 in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

Dennis Aabo Sorensen, 36 of Denmark, is the first patient to try the hand, which used electrodes implanted into the nerves in his upper arm. During a 2013 clinical trial, which lasted 4 weeks, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QtPs8d4JbwY" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">the hand let him distinguish the consistency</a> and shape of objects, as well as how hard he was grasping them. Source:

Dennis Aabo Sorensen, 36 of Denmark, is the first patient to try the hand, which used electrodes implanted into the nerves in his upper arm. During a 2013 clinical trial, which lasted 4 weeks, the hand let him distinguish the consistency and shape of objects, as well as how hard he was grasping them.

"The sensory feedback was incredible. I could feel things that I hadn't been able to feel in over nine years." Dennis Aabo Sorensen

During the trial, Sorenson was blindfolded and wore earplugs and tested on his ability to describe objects he handled. Scientists say it will take many more years until a "sensory-enhanced prosthetic" hand for commercial use will be available, but that research is going in the right direction.

The FDA on May 9 approved a prosthetic hand made by private New Hampshire company DEKA, which was founded by Segway creator Dean Kamen. The robotic prosthetic weighs and looks like an adult human hand, and is controlled by the user's thoughts. Copyright 2014 Reuters

The FDA on May 9 approved a prosthetic hand made by private New Hampshire company DEKA, which was founded by Segway creator Dean Kamen. The robotic prosthetic weighs and looks like an adult human hand, and is controlled by the user's thoughts.

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