Bionics is perhaps the greatest enhancement received by modern-day prostheses, in the era of neuroscience. The importance and essentiality of prosthetics come to light when we try to understand the path of progressing the field. Whenever a discipline in science or technology reaches its zenith it blesses prosthetics with an open hand. The developments in the field of prosthetics are fueled by a very urge to contribute. Humans are social animals and every being is expected to play its part if we are to survive. However, It is not expected of an amputee to play their part with satisfactory finesse. An amputee is a burden society carries on its shoulders. This gradually accumulating load of amputations slows down the progress of a society.

Prosthetics is perhaps the only solution to this problem. It is impossible to completely rehabilitate an amputee, but prostheses can significantly give back the lost effectiveness.

A bionic prosthesis however is way more empowering than an ordinary prosthesis. A bionic prosthesis can obey the wielder’s wills. And it is more effective in terms of helping someone come back to life. This article will discuss the relevance of bionics in the light of constructive criticism.

How it works

A bionic prosthesis is controlled by an onboard microcomputer. The computer is responsible for the translation of electromyographic signals received from the muscles. The EMG information generated by the muscles is received by EMG sensors placed non-invasively in the skin. These EMG sensors can pick up EMG signals from the residual muscles and feed them to the computer. Which translates the data into gestures and actions in accordance with the hardware capabilities.

The shortcomings

The working mechanism sheds light on two major shortcomings of a bionic prosthetic arm. The first one lies with the muscles. Amputations are extreme measures taken to save a life. Sometimes from an infection or maybe unstoppable cancer. Thus, it is not always possible to maintain an acceptable limb length and all the necessary muscles. Due to this reason, many in need can not avail of the blessings of bionics.

The EMG sensors placed on the skin are non-invasive, hence they have no connection with the sensory nerves. This drawback deprives a bionic prosthesis of almost all the sensory capabilities. Hence the bionic prosthesis experience is somewhat incomplete at the moment.

Most important of all, many amputees in our country are unaware of the existence of bionic prostheses. Thankfully, massive globalization and the reach of the internet might soon end the ordeal.

The future

The future, however, seems bright. Until the emergence of 3d printed organs, bionics is poised to remain the best option for prosthetics. The major drawbacks of modern-day bionic prostheses seem to fade away with the rise of the neuromusculoskeletal sensor placement paradigm. These sensors are invasive and can reach the sensory nerve bundles. If supported with the right hardware and sensors, prostheses with neuromusculoskeletal sensors can receive and help in the processing of sensory data.

By Adam Smith

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