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World’s First Bionic Fingers

Touch Bionics, a company out of Livingston, UK and Hilliard, Ohio known for its i-LIMB device, is making available a new finger prosthesis system. ProDigits, a customizable platform that can be adapted to the needs of individual patients, provides electronically powered artificial fingers that can grasp and manipulate objects. The new hand can also be used for more advanced tasks such as typing on a keyboard.

From the product page:

Each individually powered ProDigit or prosthetic finger provides myoelectric control that has never been possible before. Now patients or users with between 1-5 missing fingers have a solution for what was once a highly debilitating condition.

There are physical criteria that dictate whether ProDigits are appropriate or not – candidates must have ‘Amputation at Transmetacarpal Level’ or higher of one or more fingers. It is possible to support candidates with a portion of the finger remaining, however, this does affect the aesthetics of the overall prosthesis.

The articulating digit underpins much of Touch Bionics’ technical advantage and it is this articulation that provides the biggest benefit to the patient or user. With the ability to bend, touch, pick-up and point – the ProDigits used within an overall prosthesis reflect the function of a natural hand more.

The modular nature of each ProDigit and the individually powered motor located within each digit means that the clinician can build a replacement prosthesis that is close to the patient or users missing anatomy. Solutions can be built to match the sound side or any remaining fingers. Thumb solutions can be built using either powered or non-powered options. Sockets are custom-designed and fabricated for each individual’s needs.

ProDigits can be controlled via inputs from either FSR (Force Sensitive Resistor) or Remote Electrodes – either input option is chosen on the basis of either the signal site, the available space and patient or user preference. The control strategy is based on a traditional myoelectric regime, however, Touch Bionics has developed Bluetooth™ enabled solutions that mean the clinician can adjust the finer motor functions to the specific patient or user. A unique stall feature allows patients or users to point single digits for typing, hand gestures or the use of a telephone – amongst other everyday tasks.

Press release: Touch Bionics unveils world’s first bionic finger…

Product page: ProDigits™ – The Partial Hand Solution…

ProDigits™ brochure…

*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*

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