Paralysis Technology -Controlling the Hand

music
ambience: sound of electric razor, shaving

We’re listening to the sound of Jim Jatich shaving with an electric razor. What’s unusual is that Jim has been without the use of his arms or legs since an accident left him paralyzed over 20 years ago. I’m Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet. Jim is able to shave without assistance because of technology developed at Cleveland’s Functional Electrical Stimulation Center. A device sends electrical impulses to the muscles in Jim’s paralyzed hands, allowing him to grasp everyday objects.

“I have a shoulder control that is mounted on my shoulder of the opposite hand that I want to control. So what I do is push a joystick button that’s mounted in the center of my chest. As I push that button, it opens my hand, and as I move my shoulder forward, my hand closes, and as I move my shoulder back, my hand opens.”

Well Jim Jatich is a design engineer who helped to develop the very system which allows him to use his hands to perform everyday tasks.

“Now then you can imagine if a person wants to hold an object, and they move around in their wheelchair and their shoulder’s moving, they would drop that object. So what we have in this is a lock position. Now how that works is, if a person moved their shoulder up or down real quick, it locks your hand in a position where you want to hold the object and how strong you want to hold the object. So imagine you are holding a razor and you’re shaving yourself. Now if you moved your shoulder, you would drop the razor. So if you have it in the lock position, you can shave.”

With the help of this technology, users can write with a pen, handle a fork, or load and unload a computer disk, or a videotape everyday tasks that once may have seemed impossible.

Pulse of the Planet is presented by the National Science Foundation. I’m Jim Metzner.

music

Paralysis Technology -Controlling the Hand

Quadriplegic patients can now do common tasks with the aid of a device that uses shoulder movements to control their paralyzed hands.
Air Date:10/22/2009
Scientist:
Transcript:

music
ambience: sound of electric razor, shaving

We’re listening to the sound of Jim Jatich shaving with an electric razor. What’s unusual is that Jim has been without the use of his arms or legs since an accident left him paralyzed over 20 years ago. I'm Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet. Jim is able to shave without assistance because of technology developed at Cleveland’s Functional Electrical Stimulation Center. A device sends electrical impulses to the muscles in Jim’s paralyzed hands, allowing him to grasp everyday objects.

"I have a shoulder control that is mounted on my shoulder of the opposite hand that I want to control. So what I do is push a joystick button that’s mounted in the center of my chest. As I push that button, it opens my hand, and as I move my shoulder forward, my hand closes, and as I move my shoulder back, my hand opens."

Well Jim Jatich is a design engineer who helped to develop the very system which allows him to use his hands to perform everyday tasks.

"Now then you can imagine if a person wants to hold an object, and they move around in their wheelchair and their shoulder’s moving, they would drop that object. So what we have in this is a lock position. Now how that works is, if a person moved their shoulder up or down real quick, it locks your hand in a position where you want to hold the object and how strong you want to hold the object. So imagine you are holding a razor and you’re shaving yourself. Now if you moved your shoulder, you would drop the razor. So if you have it in the lock position, you can shave."

With the help of this technology, users can write with a pen, handle a fork, or load and unload a computer disk, or a videotape everyday tasks that once may have seemed impossible.

Pulse of the Planet is presented by the National Science Foundation. I'm Jim Metzner.

music