What is Prosthesis?
A prosthesis is a technique to replace the missing body organ of human body which may be lost in any accident or due to any disease. Some children born with disabilities like missing limb, bone, arm, artery and heart valve are unable to perform their normal tasks as others can. About 1 in 50 children has a disability at birth time and around 90% of them do not attend school for even their basic education. Current statistics reports that around 10% of world population lives with disability. Prosthesis is meant to make disabled person free to do normal functions of routine. Human body organs can be replaced with prosthetic intelligent organs to sense and move artificial parts of body with the help of messages sent by brain. Near normal functionalities can be performed with this technique. Prosthetic arm and limb can be used to assist human body and are improving their functionality and flexibility to do tasks day by day. Some examples of prosthetic organs like bionic eye, arm, fingers and limb are shown
AI used in Prosthesis?
Above shown bionic and robotic body arm and limb is suggested and used for hundreds of years but they are not easy to fix and use on person’s body. Designs are improving continuously in terms of texture, flexibility of joints and visualization but these prosthetics are not user friendly. Reason to this problem is that a wearer person needs to learn how to walk with his new limb. This is time consuming as it involves practice along with tuning sessions and visit to healthcare centers. So, the amputees face difficulty to walk in their gait without lumbering. Visits and tuning sessions take hours and so it adds to cost. In particular, manual tuning is inefficient and expensive. In the figure below, you can see a physician practicing a patient to use prosthetic limb.
To avoid these difficulties, improvements are made in world of artificial intelligence to automatically tune the prosthetic organs for proper normal functionality.
Tuning of Prosthetic with AI:
It is good to mention here that in the modern era, Artificial intelligence (AI) has taken the world to new heights. Applications of AI has worldwide impact on economy and feasibility of users. In medical science, AI has played vital role in turning disabilities into strengths. For efficient performance, AI usually comes with better and supporting algorithms. In replacement of body organs, practice of hours can be saved if AI algorithms are employed which takes hardly 10 minutes to train prosthetic organ to follow user’s walking pattern. AI learns in the manner to improve the performance on the basis of error regularization. It tries to minimize the error until the model best optimizes the output’s accurate score. Recent researches have proposed that AI can optimize twelve learnable parameters of model to control the movement of prosthetic limb. These control parameters tune the model to follow walking sequence synchronized with user’s gait.
As AI algorithms needs data to train the model and has dataset dependent approaches, sensors are used in prosthesis domain to collect the data of patient’s gait and artificial organ. Then real time comparison is made between two values and parameters are tuned. Those set of trainable parameters are identified using reinforcement learning algorithm. Sequence of movement of limbs during walking is tuned using AI in 10 minutes which is challenging task. In particular, tunable parameters involve allowable movement of a joint and stiffness, focus on the walking pattern for a stable walk and parameters to avoid fall and imbalance. On the other hand, practicing manually or visit to clinicians takes days. Following figure shows the learning of model parameters based on artificial intelligence algorithm for normal walk of patient.
Prosthetic arms are also used with AI algorithms and research work has been done on it to improve stable movement of arm. Tuning of parameters like grip of fingers to hold things, elbow joint movement and control of finger movements is done using AI. Following is a disabled person with prosthetic arms attached to him.
Prosthetic arms can be controlled with brain signals and then, brain signals are read and analyzed for arm movements according to will. Sensors are attached to the skin to read signals and detect the desired movement of arm. Let’s suppose patient thinks to move index finger, then trained machine learning algorithm recognizes and translates the nerve signal to intended movement of corresponding finger. If patient wants to grab a ball or glass of water, nerve signals will be translated to relevant movements. Following is an example of disabled lady having no arm. Sensor band is attached to her skin to read signals send by brain. Robotic arm moves according to her desired movement. In short, AI is rapidly growing to solve these problems.
It is very challenging to train a prosthetic organ to make stable and natural movements as desired by the amputees. For prosthetic limb movement and walk, work has been done to move it on flat and smooth surface. So far, it is limited to produce stable gait on flat surface. AI aims to make it to move on up and down stairs as well as on rough and challenging surfaces. Future research aims to increase flexibility of joints to use fingers of bionic hand. AI aims to make robotic hand able to detect the shape of object, which amputee wants to hold. More focus will be put on the relevant impulses that intend to move hand, arm or fingers and AI model will be able to omit extra impulses and noise for the purpose of meaningful activity and will stimuli motion of prosthetic. Moreover, AI is looking forward to enhance the functionality of these proposed prototypes and conduct extensive research in this domain. Response time of prosthetics will be improved further. Cost minimization is also major concern to increase usability of these prosthetics.
Our shared study details the vital role of AI for meaningful movement and fast usage of prosthetics. So far, time response of these designed prosthetics under machine earning algorithms is in milliseconds. AI is ensuring hope for normal functionality of body parts in amputees and so urges them to do their routine tasks using these artificial intelligent designed prosthetics.