3-year-old Gets New Legs, Learns To Walk For First Time

After living most of her life without legs, a 3-year-old Cuban girl took a big first step toward a normal life Monday. Doctors amputated both of Alexa Prieto’s legs when she was just 3-months-old.

Her mother had taken her to the hospital in Havana for intestinal issues, but the infant contracted gangrene and Alexa had to lose her legs to save her life. Because she was so young at the time, Alexa has never walked in her life.

After undergoing surgery last fall to prepare for the prosthetics, Shriners Hospital for Children in Tampa fitted the toddler with a pair of temporary legs, allowing her to stand for the first time. It was a moment her mother Jacqueline Vidal, called “very emotional.”

“Everybody’s waiting for this moment,” Vidal said through the help of a translator. “They’ve been waiting for a long time to see her walk.”

Armando Quirantes, a Cuban-born prosthesis specialist, saw Alexa’s story on television and decided to sponsor the little girl, bringing her to Florida for treatment.

“She brought her little girl to the hospital for a simple intestinal problem, and she returned with a little girl with no legs,” Quirantes said, referring to Vidal.

Dr. Bryan Sinnott, a senior prosthetist at Shriners, explained that Alexa’s temporary prosthetics are clear, allowing them to see and adjust should the toddler encounter any issues while learning how to use them.

“Because she’s a child she’s going to learn very well, very fast,” he said. “I think she’s going to do really good.”

While he called it amazing to see Alexa stand for the first time, Sinnott says watching Vidal in that moment was truly the vision.

“You watch how a mom takes in the fact her child is standing, it’s a wonderful thing,” he said. “I’m just lucky to be a part of all this.”

Contact Teter Orthotics & Prosthetics for any prosthetic or orthotic care questions or needs. We’ve been providing expert prosthetic and orthotic services in Michigan since 1955 and have grown to  22 locations, including Traverse City, Alma, Kalamazoo, Marquette, and Gaylord!

 

Source of the Article: teterop.com

Prosthetic leg for Amputees designed by Jae-Hyun An to encourage new genre of ballet

Source of the Article: Dezeen.com
Prosthetic ballet leg for amputees encourages new genre of dancePratt Institute graduate Jae-Hyun An has created a prosthetic leg that allows amputees to perform ballet like never before. Unlike regular artificial limbs, which are designed to mimic the human body, the Marie-T enables amputee ballet dancers to enhance their performance. Made up of three components, Marie-T features a weighty foam-injected rotational moulded foot, with a stainless-steel toe and rubber grip that help provide the dancer with balance and momentum during rotations.

In mainstream ballet, dancers typically move in and out of the pointe position – when all body weight is supported by the tips of fully extended feet within pointe shoes. However, because of the immense strain on the foot and ankle of a performer, it is impossible for a ballet dancer to constantly perform in this position. Jae-Hyun An, who studied on the Pratt’s Industrial Design programme, designed the carbon-fibre Marie-T to enable amputees to dance on pointe throughout a performance.Jae-Hyun An designs prosthetic leg for ballet called Marie-T

New York-based An said the design, which is named after 19th-century Swedish ballet dancer Marie Taglioni, could encourage amputees to develop a new choreography that has never been achieved by mainstream ballerinas. “I wanted to explore what would happen if you could allow a person to perform on pointe 100 per cent of the time,” said An, who developed Marie-T over the course of four months. “How would ballet change? I wanted to create a tool for someone to take and let their imagination define the capabilities of the product.”

Prosthetic ballet leg for amputees encourages new genre of dance

During research, An realised that a weak ankle can twist and cause a ballerina in pointe position to wobble. In response, An designed a strong and stable ankle area that helps the ballerina stay in balance. The ankle connects to a slightly curved carbon-fibre limb which helps absorb the shock from the impact of the ballet dancer stepping forward. The limb is topped by a 3D-printed socket with steel round head screws. Ill-fitting prosthetic limbs can cause blisters and rashes on dancers, so An designed the Marie-T so that the parts can be easily switched out when they become well worn or need to be resized. The designer told Dezeen: “Prosthetics by itself is such a powerful and inspirational design. Any form of it is really amazing! Whether it is Hugh Herr’s bionic legs from the Biomechatronics Group in MIT, or the Flex-Foot Cheetah Leg from Ossur, or even a peg leg from… whenever.”

“It is inspiring because the technology is incredible but even more so because of the immense struggle an amputee has to overcome to use these products. Some argue that some of these prostheses give amputees a certain advantage in specific tasks, but I am not sure they would say the same if they ever saw how much training and care it takes to handle a prosthesis,” he continued.

“In my research I came across Viktoria Modesta and she re-interpreted performance with her prosthetics. It was visually so powerful and opened a completely new area of prosthetics for me. I fell in love with the idea of designing something that could expand the artistic and cultural scene of a community with prosthetic users.”

Prosthetic ballet leg for amputees encourages new genre of dance

AI IS FUELING SMARTER PROSTHETICS THAN EVER BEFORE

By Andrea Powell

THE DISTANCE BETWEEN prosthetic and real is shrinking. Thanks to advances in batteries, brain-controlled robotics, and AI, today’s mechanical limbs can do everything from twist and point to grab and lift. And this isn’t just good news for amputees. “For something like bomb disposal, why not use a robotic arm?” says Justin Sanchez, manager of Darpa’s Revolutionizing Prosthetics program. Well, that would certainly be handy.

Brain-Operated Arm

Capable of: Touching hands, reaching out
Mind-controlled limbs aren’t new, but University of Pittsburgh scientists are working on an arm that can feel. Wires link the arm and brain, so when pressure is applied, a signal alerts the sensory cortex.

Hand That Sees

Capable of: Looking for an opportunity
Researchers at Newcastle University have designed a hand with a tiny camera that snaps pics of objects in its view. Then an AI determines an action. Like, grasp that beer and raise it to my mouth.

The Linx

Capable of: Climbing every mountain
Unlike older lower-limb prosthetics, the Linx can tell when it’s sitting in a chair. At just under 6 pounds, it relies on seven sensors that collect data on activity and terrain, helping the leg adapt to new situations.

Bebionic

Capable of: Making rude gestures
It’s the only prosthetic hand with air-bubbled fingertips—great for typing and handling delicate objects (like eggs). And because individual motors power natural movements, wearers can flip the bird in an instant.

The Michelangelo

Capable of: Painting masterpieces
Whereas many prosthetics have a stiff thumb, Ottobock designed this model with a secondary drive unit in the fattest finger—making it opposable. So it’s easier to hold, say, a paintbrush. Big thumbs up!

The LUKE Arm

Capable of: Wielding lightsabers
Yep, LUKE as in Skywalker. The Life Under Kinetic Evolution arm is the first muscle- controlled prosthetic to be cleared by the FDA. With up to 10 motors in the arm, the Force is definitely with this one.

Source of the Article: Wired.com

Teen builds his own robotic prosthetic arm using Lego

By Blanca Rodriguez

Image result for teen builds prosthetic arm with lego

David Aguilar has built himself a robotic prosthetic arm using Lego pieces after being born without a right forearm due to a rare genetic condition.

Aguilar, 19, who studies bioengineering at the Universitat Internacional de Catalunyain Spain, is already using his fourth model of the colourful prosthetic and his dream is to design affordable robotic limbs for those who need them.

Once his favourite toys, the plastic bricks became the building material for Aguilar’s first, still very rudimentary, artificial arm at the age of nine, and each new version had more movement capability than the one before.

“As a child, I was very nervous to be in front of other guys, because I was different, but that didn’t stop me believing in my dreams,” Aguilar, who is from Andorra, a tiny principality between Spain and France, told Reuters.

“I wanted to … see myself in the mirror like I see other guys, with two hands,” said Aguilar, who uses the artificial arm only occasionally and is self-sufficient without it.

All the versions are on display in his room in the university residence on the outskirts of Barcelona. The latest models are marked MK followed by the number — a tribute to the comic book superhero Iron Man and his MK armour suits.

Aguilar, who uses Lego pieces provided by a friend, proudly displayed a red-and-yellow, fully functional robotic arm built when he was 18, bending it in the elbow joint and flexing the grabber as the electric motor inside whirred.

A presentation video on his YouTube channel that he runs under the nickname “Hand Solo” says his aim is to show people that nothing is impossible and disability cannot stop them.

After graduating from university, he wants to create affordable prosthetic solutions for people who need them.

“I would try to give them a prosthetic, even if it’s for free, to make them feel like a normal person, because what is normal, right?”

Source of the Article: Globalnews.ca

Schoolgirl with no hand gets bionic arm as Christmas gift from mystery donor

Evie Lambert, 11, will be able to open Christmas gifts for the first time thanks to ‘a real-life Santa’

An anonymous donor has gifted Evie a 3D-printed prosthetic arm (Image: Mercury Press & Media)

A girl has been given the perfect early Christmas gift of a bionic arm and will be able to open her presents unaided for the first time.

Evie Lambert, 11, was born with no left hand and was delighted when a kind-hearted anonymous donor paid for her £10,000 3D-printed arm.

Now Evie is looking forward to opening her presents on Christmas morning with her “Frozen” themed arm.

She said: “I want to say a big thank you to the donor. It is the best Christmas present ever.

“It will really help me to do things that I struggled to do before. It feels really comfortable wearing it and the hand opens and closes like a real hand. I’d love to get make-up for Christmas and now I’ll be able to put mascara on.”

Her mum Sally, 47, of Huddersfield, West Yorks said: “She couldn’t have wished for a better Christmas present.

She will now be able to open – and help wrap – presents this Christmas (Image: Mercury Press & Media)
Evie was born with no left hand (Image: Mercury Press & Media)

“If she could have put anything on her wish list it would have been this. The donor is like a real-life Santa.

“It gives her functionality. It’s the simple things that she’s enjoying doing now – like being able to hold and open a can of pop, brushing her hair, opening a lip balm or putting clothes on a hanger, things that we take for granted.

Evie Lambert with brother Henry (Image: Mercury Press & Media)

“When she does it her face just lights up.

“The most amazing thing will be seeing her open her presents on Christmas day. I’m also going to have her help me wrap Christmas gifts.”

Sally and her husband Duncan, 49, found out at the 20-week scan that Evie had no left hand.

Her arm has a Frozen design theme (Image: Mercury Press & Media)

Sally, who also has an eight-year-old son Henry, said: “We have had incidents where people have called her names and there have been stares, but I think she’s built up a resilience to it.”

The family heard about Bristol-based Open Bionics at a conference in September.

Soon after they got a call to say a donor had paid for a prosthetic for Evie, whose arm was fitted in November.

Sally said: “It’s the kind of thing you think happens to other people. It’s amazing.

“It’s such an act of kindness – you don’t think these people exist.”

Source of the article: https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/school-girl-no-hand-gets-13755653