A new lower-cost method for creating high-tech prosthetics aims to make the devices much more accessible to amputees around the world – especially children.
New York-based prosthetics company Unlimited Tomorrow unveiled its amazing 3D-printed prosthetic arm at CES this week.
The arm is equipped with muscle sensors and an artificially intelligent control system, which work together to give child amputees the ability to grip objects and move their fingers individually.
Typical high-tech prosthetics can cost a family tens of thousands of dollars out-of-pocket, even with insurance considered, Ella Scarchilli, who does marketing for Arrow Electronics, told Dailymail.com at the Las Vegas tech show.
Unlimited Tomorrow’s device currently costs around $10,000.
And, the company is hoping to slash the cost in half within the year.
While the arms can be made to fit a diverse range of recipients, Unlimited Tomorrow focuses on creating kids’ prosthetics.
For child amputees and their families, the costs of prosthetics can be astronomical over time, as they must buy new artificial limbs as they grow.
The new 3D-scanning and printing system, however, means the cost of a single high-tech prosthetic could drop from upwards of $100,000 to just $5,000.
Unlimited Tomorrow’s light-weight prosthetic arm has an adaptive grip and finger dexterity, and the firm is continually making improvements based on direct feedback from the children currently testing it out.
‘We have advanced muscle sensors that are within the socket,’ Scarchilli told Dailymail.com. ‘You can flex your muscle and it reads that and turns it into an action for your fingers.’