Experimental Device Pilot Program

Who thought a tongue piercing could lead to increased mobility?!!

Check this out! I love seeing the new ways people keep coming up with to give the disabled more independence. A Biomedical Engineer from Washington has created an experimental device for those paralyzed from the neck down that allows them to drive their own wheelchair and use a computer. The only catch?! A tongue piercing. The magnetic stud, similar to that which you would get with a regular piercing, works as a joy stick allowing the individual to steer.

A pilot program recently took place in Atlanta, Georgia using 11 quadriplegics. They were asked to maneuver a 50-meter-long obstacle course consisting of 13 turns and 24 obstacles including U-turns, reverse moves and a loop using the new device, also known as the ‘Tongue Drive System.’

The goal of the device is to increase freedom and mobility for those who rely on assistance from home care workers, friends and loved ones for even the simplest of tasks, 24 hours a day.

According to one participant, Jason DiSanto, the device was incredibly easy, especially considering he was a first time user. “It’s really powerful because it’s so intuitive,” said DiSanto. “The first time I did it, people thought I was driving for, like, years.”

To find out more about the Tongue Drive System Pilot Program and how the device itself works follow this link:

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/arts-and-life/life/health/experiment-lets-the-paralyzed-drive-wheelchair-work-a-computer-with-flick-of-a-pierced-tongue-233648481.html