01 July 2008

The wheelchair will be controlled using the language

American scientists have created a device that allows you to control a wheelchair and a computer mouse using a tiny magnet implanted in the tip of the tongue. According to researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology, the tests on healthy volunteers were successful.

The new device consists of a magnet the size of a grain of rice, which is fixed to the patient's tongue during implantation, piercing or using tissue glue.

The signals of the magnetic "beacon" are perceived by a wireless device that is attached to the head area, or by orthodontic braces.

The information is then wirelessly transmitted to a portable computer attached to the patient's clothing or wheelchair.

The new technology may be especially useful for people with severe spinal cord lesions and neuromuscular diseases.

Its advantage is that, unlike limbs, the tongue is directly connected to the brain, said the head of the study Maysam Ghovanloo (Maysam Khovanlu). 

According to him, the movements of the tongue are fast, precise and do not require excessive thinking, concentration and effort.

An additional advantage is the possibility of an individual approach: a unique set of tongue movements that are convenient for a particular patient can be entered into the computer. For example, touching different teeth with the tip of the tongue can indicate different commands, he added.

The device has already been successfully tested on 12 healthy volunteers. In the near future, the novelty is planned to be tested directly on patients confined to a wheelchair, scientists said during a meeting of the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA), held in Washington.

Copper NewsPortal "Eternal youth" www.vechnayamolodost.ru


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