Sunday, December 16, 2007

Haptic Vest

Response to: Visual Feedback for Backs.

It's kind of funny and tragic at the same time that all the technology for preventing and treating most forms of back pain is already (widely) available. But: the models health professionals have in their heads and base their choice of treatment on are outdated - that's why it's so difficult for new treatments to take hold.

I've written about this in my Mirror Box Treatment series.

As Bach-Y-Rita found out our brain doesn't depend on visual feedback alone - touch is "created equal". ;-)
So for areas of the body that we can't see directly with our own eyes we can use touch instead.

The US Military is developing a haptic vest that would allow soldiers to communicate by touch signals applied to their backs. Imagine if all commercially available clothing had that feature!
Finally social grooming and communicating would be reunited again!

Talking with someone - however far away they are - could be "translated" into a form of touch.
I guess that would be the end of back pain for good. ;-)

Another great tool increasingly used in Rehabilitation is the Nintendo Wii.
I was very skeptical when I heard about Nintendos new gaming console - but it has been a huge success so far. It puts the gamer right into the action by having him move the controller around.

Lots of people are already using it as a Rehabilitation tool - the new field of Rehabitainment (Rehabilitation and Entertainment) was thus born.
Other forms of this type of treatment is the use of VR (virtual reality) for burn victims.

All we need now is someone who starts applying the same principles to chronic low back pain.
Any takers?

No comments: