Health problems from cybernetics?

Doran L. Barton fozz at hypermoo.com
Thu May 17 14:36:57 MDT 2012


On Thursday, May 17, 2012 02:08:10 PM S. Dale Morrey wrote:
> Sometime ago there was a movie about a guy who had his brain upgraded with
> a computer so he could be a courier for sensistive information.  A coworker
> and I were discussing this and it lead to an interesting discussion about
> the future of healthcare where many people have various implants.
> My thinking is that the risk of infection & rejection are pretty high and
> will remain so.

There is always a risk of infection whenever the body is cut open, but most 
implants are made of (or coated with) inert materials that the body doesn't 
have an immunological response to. As has already been mentioned, there are 
pacemakers, prosethics used in orthopedics, not to mention teeth.

I've given some thought to this as I've considered getting myself an Esteem 
hearing implant and even went as far as going to the U of U Hospital to verify 
that I am a good candidate for it. While I was always made fun of growing up 
as being a robot or a cyborg because I wore hearing aids, the Esteem truly is 
a cybernetic enhancement, in my mind, because it is completely inside the 
body. It is, in a sense, a hearing aid that works completely in the inner-ear 
by using your eardrum as its microphone and the cochlea as its transmitter to 
the brain. Esteem patients, unlike hearing aid wearers, can go swimming 
without removing anything or turning anything off. 

For the moment, I've decided to wait. I'll probably look into it again when 
the second generation has come out. I'm getting by okay with hearing aids at 
the moment. 

-- 
Doran L. Barton - Hypermoo Inc. - <fozz at hypermoo.com> - 801-520-9875
Open source consulting, custom development, systems/network administration
 "City Residents Can Drop Off Trees"
    -- Headline seen in a newspaper
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