Brigham and Women’s Hospital is hoping to revolutionize amputation surgery, giving patients more control of the prosthetics they’ll have to live with.
On Monday the Boston-based hospital unveiled a new experimental surgical technology that in intended to preserve more nerves than allowed by a typical saw.
The tool, developed by Dr. Matthew Carty with the help of the MIT Media Lab, preserves more nerves so that patients will be able to better control robotic prosthetics.
Using nerve tissue rather than muscle tissue will allow for better fine-motor coordination, WCVB reported.
Jim Ewing a 52-year-old rock climber, was the first to undergo this experimental treatment. He made the decision to amputate his lower left leg after a climbing accident in the Cayman Islands last year. If successful, the surgery will enable him to perform complex actions and feel sensation by allowing his brain to interact with a robotic prosthetic.
It will be six months before Ewing is outfitted with his prosthetic.