In a recent press release, Össur announced that two amputees are the first people in the world able to control their prosthetic legs with their thoughts. According to the press release, tiny implanted myoelectric sensors that have been surgically placed in the amputees’ residual muscle tissue trigger the desired movement via a receiver located inside the prosthesis. Dr. Thorvaldur Ingvarsson, M.D., Ph.D, the orthopaedic surgeon who leads Össur’s research and development efforts and spearheaded the mind-controlled prosthetics project, is quoted as stating that:
The technology allows the user’s experience with their prosthesis to become more intuitive and integrative.
The result is the instantaneous physical movement of the prosthesis however the amputee intended. They no longer need to think about their movements because their unconscious reflexes are automatically converted into myoelectric impulses that control their Bionic prosthesis.
According to the press release, the mind-controlled technology works with all current commercially available Össur Bionic prostheses, including the company’s POWER KNEE, RHEO KNEE, PROPRIO FOOT and SYMBIONIC LEG.