Researchers in Australia are working on helping those in the world who suffer from chronic back pain with a chip that’ll block that pain from reaching the brain. They’ve yet to try the device on humans, but they’re confident that it’ll work. I should hope so! Also this sort of thing frightens me. What happens if you get a giant stick jabbed into your back and you can’t feel it? What then, science? You’ll have stick-back syndrome. But this device will be more precise than all that – blocking only the pains that are useless to the human brain, the kind that never go away.
This chip was designed by biomedical, electrical, and mechanical engineers in Australia and will be inserted into the body with a biocompatible device (so your body doesn’t reject it.) The device will be sewn into a 1.22mm-wide polymer yarn fixed with electronic wires. Each of these wires are sewn directly unto the human spine without causing a bit of damage. The device is hooked then to a separate device which contains a wirelessly chargeable battery and a processor so that the initial device can be monitored and its output adjusted as necessary.
This device is being developed by NICTA CTO implant technologies and is about the size of a matchbox. In addition to helping with chronic back pain, this device, NICTA says, could help with leg pain, pain from nerve damage, migraines, Parkinson’s disease tremors, and epileptic seizures!