“Sometimes I forget I have a prosthetic leg,” says Gummi.
That is a remarkable statement.
Gummi, an amputee from childhood, is among the first two patients trialing newly developed implants by Ossur (2015). Integrating modern electronics into the human body, the Icelandic company has created a limb that is controllable with the subconscious mind.
So, how does it work?
Gummi had sensors inserted into his stump. These sensors link his central nervous system to an electronic ankle, which moves when it receives signals from Gummi’s brain.
“It was really strange. I couldn't explain it. It was like, I was moving it with my muscles, there was nobody else doing it, the foot was not doing it, I was doing it, so it was really strange and overwhelming,” Gummi explained to Reuters. He also quoted as saying that, it took me about 10 minutes to get control of it.“
Different than other mind controlled bionics, these limbs do not use transplanted muscle nor do they require neuroplasticity (brain retraining). The technology is completely dependent on Implanted Myoelectric Sensors (IMES).
So where can you sign up? Well, it’s not ready just yet. It will be a few more years, but we are happy to report it’s definitely on the way.