Archive | August, 2012

Should the Human body be altered with?

17 Aug

Recently, advance technology has revealed that various parts of the body, i.e. organs could theoretically be replaced by electronically manufactured organs, limbs etc… This meaning part of man could possibly be machine.
In fact, later on this year, the researchers are going to try to test out the first bionic eye implant in the UK (i.e. a manufactured machine). The pro’s of this research is that people who are blind could theoretically see again, and people with loss of limbs could walk/run again. To them, it’s a miracle. I do believe that technology should be utilised for the greater good of man, and using it to create organs and limbs is excellent. So many people’s lives would be saved.
Currently in the US, a university has developed one of the most advanced bionic arms with military funding. And intend to test this arm on a member of the military who has lost a limb. The bionic arm is very advance, that it can restore almost full dexterity just like a normal arm. Another part of the body which could be replaced is the eye; he light-sensitive chip is attached under the retina at the back of the eye. It converts light into electrical impulses which are then sent to the brain. The patient is then able to interpret the light falling onto the tiny 1,500 pixel implant as recognisable images. The implant costs about £65,000 ($100,000; 80,000 Euros) excluding surgery and maintenance costs. This is another miracle, as it has been tested on a patient who has claimed that they could almost read and spot letters and objects. As well as the eye and arm, there is the bionic heart, ear, pancreas, and brain.
Obviously as time goes on, who knows, this research could advance even further and more advancements on this technology could be synthesised. However there could be some ethical implications to this new research/discovery. When something new is brought out/invented, there are always some kinds of problems/implications that come along with it as well. And the fact that it’s entirely to do with humans, there is bound to be some ethical issues that the bureaucracy has encouraged. These could be that maybe people will be unsatisfied/embarrassed having to say that they have a fake, machine eye, or a machine arm/leg etc….it could make people feel less human. Furthermore, it could cause implications at airports, I.e. the metal would be detected in metal detectors, and obviously security would be suspicious as they cannot see within the mechanical structures. Hence, causing confusion and embarrassment for the patient.
Overall, I find this research and development a phenomenal idea that would definitely help those who are experiencing difficulty due to loss of body parts.

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