Petoskey Prosthetics Benefit from Technology

Teter Orthotics & Prosthetics has seen impressive developments to prosthetic limbs during its 45 years in business, particularly in recent years with innovations in robotics and high tech industries. As prosthetics continue to become more technologically advanced they may also become more affordable.

Just a decade ago electronic artificial limbs were heavy, unwieldy and easily broken. New materials that are stronger and lighter offer amputees durability in their prosthetics that won’t impede functionality.

Robotic joints are now able to sense movement, adjusting automatically for variations in activity, speed and even terrain. Perhaps even more incredibly, research with American soldiers has led to a new generation of prosthetic limbs with bionic components, which can be controlled by the thoughts of the people who wear them.

Movements are more realistic. Artificial limbs are lightweight and long lasting. But the costs have remained high, many running $80,000 or more, which for many families and individuals even with the help of insurance is beyond what they are able to budget for a health-related expense.

Happily, American ingenuity abounds and the latest buzz in prosthetics is focused on the impact of inexpensive 3D printers and free online resources on prosthetic designs.

Innovators like Easton LaChappelle of Colorado, a 17-year old high school student whose work on artificial limbs has gained the attention of President Obama and NASA, are using 3D printers to reduce the costs significantly. This could mean that in the very near future Petoskey prosthetics will be far less expensive for the most cutting edge technology.

LaChappelle’s friend had access to a 3D printer, which enabled the teen to use a 3D modeling program and source ready-made elements on Thingiverse. He designed an artificial arm that would work with an open source hand; when his friend printed it on the 3D printer the cost was estimated around $250. This highly functional prosthetic gained the teen an invite to the White House Science Fair.

The implications of this important research and design work for prosthetics could help not just Americans, but those who need prosthetics around the world. Only 5% of approximately 25 million amputees in developing countries have artificial limbs. If highly functional prosthetics can be created at a fraction of the cost, the lives of countless people worldwide could be improved significantly.

Looking for the best prosthetics Petoskey Michigan has to offer? Contact the professionals at Teter Orthotics & Prosthetics for your Petoskey prosthetic needs. Our staff has offered Michigan families the highest quality prosthetics and knowledgeable service for over 45 years

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