The ideal circumstances for the implementation of bionic prostheses.

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advanced prosthetic arm

Prostheses are the only means of rehabilitation when it comes to post-amputation complications. The loss of a limb is an irreversible loss irreplaceable by nature. An accident, unstoppable cancer or maybe an infection can be the cause of amputation. Amputations are thus desperate and life-saving measures, taken for saving a life from certain death. But these life-saving measures disrupt the fine anatomical balance of the human body.

The human body is a fine-tuned organism, known for utilizing most of its anatomy. Loss of a limb usher in a loss of multiple functions. And in turn, hampers multiple overlapping processes involved with the limb.

This sudden loss of ability paves the way for the emergence of a plethora of mental disorders. But after the emergence of bionics, the scenario changed completely. Bionics gave modern-day prostheses the aspect of functionality. The more cosmetic-like prostheses became delicate instruments of rehabilitation, able to give back a lot of lost abilities. But these amazing devices can not always be implemented for every case of amputation. This article will discuss the ideal conditions for the implementation of a bionic prosthesis.

The right length of the residual limb

The length of the limb is related to both the welding and functioning of a bionic prosthesis. A bionic prosthesis is controlled by electronics, primarily, an onboard microcomputer.  This computer picks up electromyographic information from the electromyographic sensor placed on the skin and translates them into gestures and actions. These translations depend upon the hardware capability and processing power of the computer. A bionic prosthesis lacks any sensory ability to speak of due to the non-invasive sensor paradigm it deploys.

The EMG data generated by muscle movement is essential for the functioning of a bionic prosthesis. Thus the residual muscles are essential for wielding a bionic prosthesis. Amputations are often candid and fail to preserve the residual muscles. The amputees lacking all the necessary residual muscles are thus considered ineligible for wielding a  bionic prosthesis.

Phantom limb phenomenon

An advanced prosthetic arm requires certain anatomical modifications for efficient functioning. Myelination and synapses are the key anatomical mods, necessary for detailed control. After the sudden loss of a limb, the human brain refuses to recognize the loss immediately. These anatomical modifications remain active long afterwards, generating a pseudo sensation of the lost limb. But the reality is harsh and triggers frustration. These frustrating sensations sometimes culminate into severe pain.

A bionic prosthesis in this scenario can prove to be an ideal option for rehabilitation. It uses the modifications causing the pain and utilizes their presence for a goal greater than the alleviation of the pain. It is best to arm an amputee with bionic enhancements, while the severity of the phantom phenomenon is at its prime.

The nature of the injury and diseases

The nature of injury determines the nature of amputation and post-amputation functionality. An injury affecting the spine and rendering it affected can disqualify an amputee from wielding an empowering bionic enhancement. Additionally, any injury affecting the relevant dermatomes can also prove to be a devastating blow. In a nutshell, any injury affecting the sensory-motor capabilities of an amputee can be considered detrimental in the path of post-amputation rehabilitation.

Progressive neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer’s and ALS can prevent a bionic prosthesis from getting implemented. The progressive nature of these diseases renders the initial calibration of a bionic prosthesis useless and repeated recalibration becomes essential. Additionally, in the case of ALS, recalibration alone can not rehabilitate the patient after an amputation. Other diseases like Parkinson’s and dementia are also among the diseases which render the wielding experience into something less empowering, if not making the process of implementation impossible.

Awareness

In a country like ours, bionic prostheses are still considered an instrument of luxury. Many amputees eligible enough to wield are unaware of the existence of bionic prostheses. Despite the presence of indigenous prostheses manufacturers societies continue to slow down under a load of amputations. The learned and enlightened must step up and spread the word. So that a completely dependent and immobile class of society can find peace in pace. The bigger picture will change into something more progressive and advanced if we join hands and promote these amazing devices.