Please watch this video, or at least skip through, to get an idea of what inspired this post.
If you don’t feel like watching the vid, it’s about another person who has gained the once unattainable—a robot arm, like the kind they use in Star Wars and other sci-fi related fantasy stuff.
What really triggered me about this post was not the technological advancement, because I’ve seen it before, I already knew the actual integration of man and machine would happen. I am more concerned with the mental aspects of a procedure like this.
The man in this video appears to be doing fine but my concern is how exactly does he do after taking the mechanical limb off once he is done using it for the research purposes? It’s definitely tough and takes time to adapt to living life without one of your limbs but you get used to it. However, what if you can magically bring it back and have the feelings and sensations and use of the lost limb yet again?
How is his human psyche adapting to the periods of when he has the limb back and when it’s taken away again? I’m sure his brain has adjusted his body to the attaching and removing of the arm, but what about the completeness that might be lacking due to the man seeing his “arm” back and then “disappearing” again in these short periods of time? I have the same question about other people with prosthetic limbs can relate and there is probably some research into the psychological repercussions of prosthetics but the difference here is that the mechanical ones connect to the body and the brain. So wouldn’t taking off a prosthetic such as this be equivalent to removing an actual limb over and over again? Of course, this would be without the pain aspect I assume but may perhaps leave a psychological pain in the times the user is not using it and the user would have to micro-adapt to not using it (I say micro-adapt because the user will eventually get to put the limb back onto their body).
I don’t know if they do this already for those with non-neural prosthetics but I assume they do (I’m thinking they do such as psych evals for veterans with PTSD who also lost a limb that may contribute to their PTSD but not entirely restricted to this example), there should be a group of psychologists (if not already) who specialize for this future med-tech advancement. Just looking ahead since this tech has been desired for a long time, I would assume that scientists have considered this but one can never be certain and also because I haven’t researched it that much as of yet.
I will more than likely produce an edit to this post if I find any more info on the subject or I get around to doing more research. It’s just a thought that occurred to me as I was looking beyond the happy-go-lucky vibe of the video. The video triggered my thoughts about the real world implications if the tech was released to the entire public and at this point, it seems things are moving well. I just hope they hurry up and put an appropriate arm looking exterior because it looked weird seeing that mechanical arm move. It looked like a skeleton almost and before I make another post and going to leave it at this—mechanical arm prosthetic aesthetics. 😎