As I’m a fan of saying, this new future we live in is awesome. Prosthetics have always been limited by the fact that they couldn’t actually be controlled by our brain like natural limbs can be. Many different mechanisms have been designed to allow prosthetics to mimic much of the utility of our natural limbs but in the arm and hand department these mechanisms have always been limited. But the future is now and prosthetics capable of being controlled by the brain are making their way to market:
So a Maple Grove clinic, Advanced Arm Dynamics, reached out and helped him get a surgery that would change his life once more.
It works by re-energizing the nerves in Jirak’s shoulder to send messages to electrodes in the prosthesis, letting his brain tell his arm how to move.
Pat Prigge is a prosthetist with Advance Arm Dynamics.
“So, when Mike is thinking about opening and closing his hand, his brain is sending signals down the right pathway, and he’s opening and closing his hand in his brain, too. So, that’s a big deal,” Prigge said.
After a fifteen and a half hour surgery at Mayo, Prigge helped prep Jirak for his new arm.
“It’s not for the faint at heart. He’s been doing rehab now with us for a year,” Prigge said. And it’s working.
That’s really cool. It will probably take some time before we can create prosthetics that have the same capabilities as our natural limbs but we’re on the correct path. After we master that we can make prosthetics that exceed our natural limbs and then we’ll have full-blown Deus Ex, which will be awesome!