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Bionic Women –No longer the Stuff of Science Fictio

nique. Gregory Dumanian, a plastic surgeon, at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago assisted Kuiken to move the five nerves that once controlled her arm. The ends of the nerves were placed in her chest by Dumanian, where they re-grew close to the skin. Electrodes that are placed on the surface of Mitchell’s chest send signals which control the arm.

Kuiken said, “The brain doesn’t know that these nerves are connected to different tissue or muscle.”

For Mitchell thoughts of moving her hand or arm causes an activation of the nerves just as if they were still leading all the way down her arm and into the elbow and fingers. These signals are in turn picked up by the electrodes on her skin, that send commands to the six motors in the electronic arm.

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