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Bionic Implants

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Technology has been the topic of discussion in all the companies in the recent past. In all sectors people and scientists are trying to improve technology. The world of medicine has not been left out in this and the scientists and doctors are even trying so hard to see if they can manage to make an artificial human being. To start with, they are coming up with artificial human body parts and they are trying them in animals and later in human bodies. Different body parts implants have been successful. The scientists have called these bionic implants where a human body part is replaced with an artificial one. Various bionic implants are made. With the ability to produce synthetic body parts like limbs and organs the scientists have been able to make much progress in the replacement of body parts, including:

Brain

The human brain is very sensitive and important body part that when tampered with can lead to complete change of an individual. With this importance it has given the doctors and the scientists the urge to research and try to find a solution to a damaged brain. It is very well known, that brain controls our muscles, stores our memory and also assists in how we relate to others and thus it determines who we are and our personalities. Brain can be damaged through a road accident or any other accident that interferes with the head. It can also be damaged in case of a patient with stroke (John, 2006). Doctors have at least tried to bring a solution to this by trying to repair the brain using a prosthetic brain. Doctors have come up with a device that can be implanted into the brain and it is believed to be able to restore the lost memory. The pioneer in this technology is Dr Theodore Berger who is from the University of Southern California.

Eyes

Eyes are very important body parts in a human being. They help us to see light and thus together with the brain the eyes help us to recognize images. Many people all over the world do suffer from eye problems and even blindness. There are two forms of blindness. One form is macular degeneration and the other one is retinitis pigmentosa. With these forms of blindness, doctors in Germany have been trying their level best to ensure that people with the two conditions would have at least an improved life. They had recently implanted eye implants into three people and significant difference was noted. They implanted electronic sensors, like those found in digital cameras, in the back part of their eyes. The sensors when hit with the light produce electrical impulses. At the back of the eye there exists a nerve that links what the eye sees to the brain. This is the nerve that transports the electric impulse produced by the implanted chip to the brain enabling the patient to see. However, the implants were not a complete success, since the patients could only differentiate some objects. The complete sight of the patients was not restored. The doctors are however working on it very hard to see an improvement on the implant and positive results.

Ears

Ear implant has been done a long period of time ago, dating 40yrs. It has been one of the most successful body part implants with many people already wearing the artificial ears. The implant however has had challenges just like other implants. The process involves the implanted cochlear transmitting sound inform of electronic impulse into the ear. The implanted ear is not able to differentiate different sounds. This is a major problem since in a noisy environment the patent cannot hear. As a result of that, the patient is not able to enjoy music. However, the doctors are still working on the improvement of the implant to solve that issue.

Heart

Many are the times when the hearts of individuals are damaged and repaired by some artificial pumps that help with pumping of the blood in the body system. However, scientists have recently claimed that they have been able to make an artificial heart that can be implanted in a human being permanently (Vincent, 2006). The heart failure causes death. The doctors are trying to reduce the cases of deaths by implanting an artificial heart. This has been done in Italy, where a 15 year old boy has undergone the process of implantation. The use of implants began last year. The artificial heart functions just like the natural heart by pumping blood into the cavities of the organ and then into the arteries. The doctors behind this are using the hydraulic technology and it has proved to be working. This, if totally successful, will see many deaths being stopped, having in mind that so many people die as a result of heart related problems.

Arm

Our arms are very crucial body parts when it comes to things like working, eating, washing and also balance. Many people in the world are born with their hands but they lose them in accidents like fatal road accident. The doctors have thus been trying to provide a solution to such people by making a bionic arm. There has been a success though not complete. The prosthetic arm is attached to the skin (Videler, 2004). The arm has electrodes which allow the arm to close and open when the patient tenses the muscle. This enables the patient to even squash up something. The biggest challenge with the arm is that the patient has less control of its movements. The doctors are thus trying their level best to see that they improve the control of the arm. This will see many people stop depending on others and it will also make them be able to live a better life than that they are currently living. The doctors are trying to research on how the neural network works in the natural limbs. They will then map that to the artificial limb and this will see it work just like the natural one.

Muscles

Scientists are considering replacing muscles in a damaged body part, like an arm, instead of having the entire arm being replaced. The doctors are trying to make artificial muscles of the materials that contact and expand when come into contact with the chemical signals of the body.  This will see a successful muscle implant in future, thus a successful repair of the damaged limbs.

Tendons

The scientists have come up with artificial tendons that facilitate the movements of the body parts. They have believed that other than facilitating the movements, the tendons help the body rebuild other tendons and eventually the natural tendons are developed. The artificial tendons work just like the natural tendons.

Touch

Even with all that progress in the bionic implants, the patients miss out very important thing. They don’t feel a touch since the implants are only the way; they don’t give information back to the brain for interpretation. This however has made some Italian doctors try to develop the feedback system for the body. This will help the implants see another progress.

Conclusion

With all that progress in bionic implants, there is even more hope that in future completely successful implants are going to appear and people with damages of the body parts are going to have solutions. This will benefit not only the individuals but also the entire human race, since accidents are not planned and neither diseases. Dependence will also reduce with success of bionic implants.

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