Issues impairing the success of neural implant technology
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1533/abbi.2006.0055
By monitoring signals from the central nervous system, humans can be provided with a novel extra channel of communication that can, for example, be used for the voluntary control of peripheral devices. Meanwhile, stimulation of neural tissue can bring about sensation such as touch, can facilitate feedback from external, potentially remote devices and even opens up the possibility of new sensory input for the individual to experience. The concept of successfully harnessing and stimulating nervous system activity is though something that can only be achieved through an appropriate interface. However, interfacing the nervous system by means of implant technology carries with it many problems and dangers. Further, results achieved may not be as expected or as they at first appear. This paper describes a comparative study investigating different implant types and procedures. It is aimed at highlighting potential problem areas and is intended to provide a useful reference explaining important tolerances and limits.