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Wednesday 6 December 2023 Dublin: 8°C
Stanford University The battery-less electrostimulator can be implanted and wirelessly charged deep inside the body.
medical implant

Breakthrough wireless charging method will allow for deep body implants

The development would allow medical devices like pacemakers to have smaller batteries and be placed deep within the human body.

AN ELECTRICAL ENGINEER from Stanford University has invented a way to wirelessly charge devices which are implanted deep within someone’s body.

The research, which was carried out by electrical engineer Ana Poon, found that devices like pacemakers, nerve simulators and other medical devices can be implanted deeper within the human body using this method.

This approach, called “mid-field wireless transfer,” could mean such medical devices can also be smaller since they don’t require a larger battery required to last a few years. It also safe to use with an independent laboratory which tests phones found that her system fell well below the danger exposure level for human safety.

The report also says it could allow medical professionals to rely more on electronics to treat diseases instead of drugs.

Poon’s team has already created a pacemaker the same size as a grain of rice that can be charged by holding a power source the size of a credit card above it, outside the body.

So far, a few tests on small animals, such as powering a tiny pacemaker in a rabbit. The group is currently preparing the system for testing in humans, but even if it’s approved for testing and successful, it will be a number of years before such devices will be included in commercial medical devices.

The findings were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, which was released this week.

StanfordUniversity / YouTube

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