New technology will change the lives of amputees
Millions of people live will limb loss worldwide due to various tragic accidents. For those, who have control of all their faculties, it’s hard to imagine what these people go through truly. Some of them have to change their lifestyle and profession drastically, while others face many obstacles just doing the little everyday things.
However, many scientists work to make life easier for amputees. New technologies will help them to remain active members of society and do the things they love. According to the Amputee Coalition, approximately 2.7 million individuals live with limb loss in the United States. That means about one American in 190 is an amputee. The statistic is staggering, but thankfully, there are means to offer these people better mobility.
Researchers in this area primarily concentrate on developing orthotic and prosthetic devices. Elizabeth Flow, the Prosthetist Orthotist certified at Progressive Prosthetics and Orthotics in Joplin, remarked that currently, two fields of highly advanced technology appear much more viable. Scientists are developing “microprocessors.” This tech will enable people to walk easily if incorporated into knee prostheses. Experts call the latter microprocessor knees or computer-controlled knees. They enable people to hike hills or walk on uneven terrain without much effort.
Moreover, this technology is useful for ankle prostheses. They contain a gyroscope analyzing the terrain or the walking space and work accordingly, often helping the user to avoid stumbling. For example, if the person is walking up the hill, the technology will change to suit the climbing uphill and use different modes while walking down the hill. Flow noted that microprocessor gives its users more stability, which is very important.
This technology isn’t new, but they were mostly experimental at first. However, that changed over the last few years, and now microprocessors are widely accepted and used.
What about Osseointegration?
Osseointegration is an advanced procedure that will help amputees greatly. John Hopkins Medicine reported that this reconstructive surgery technique was created specifically for amputees. Moreover, the procedure enables patients to go without a traditional prosthesis.
However, thus far, only a handful of medical centres practice this technique in the United States, John Hopkins being one of them. Surgeons state that this procedure can enhance the functioning of individuals with arm amputations and those living with shortened bones after amputation. The latter makes it more difficult to wear a regular prosthesis.
Flow pointed out that the number of people with limp loss is increasing yearly, but doctors are working on new ways to help them. Thus, such people need to know that they have options to live their lives as they did before the accident.
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