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Medical implants: what if your next charger was slipped under the skin?

Medical implants: what if your next charger was slipped under the skin?

This study seems straight out of a science fiction film. If she is not proposing to medical implants a chip in her wrist to open doors or be monitored by a dark government, there is still a question of inserting electronic equipment under her skin.

Medical implants: what if your next charger was slipped under the skin?

Although the practice may seem frightening, it has actually become more and more commonplace over the past ten years. Bioelectric implants are becoming more and more numerous; they generally help patients with long-term treatment.

In other situations, it is a sensor taking health information like heart rate or blood pressure. But like all electrical systems, they need to recharge. This is where scientists from Lanzhou University come into play.

A charger under the skin

They have developed a wireless charger that can be grafted under the skin. Fully biodegradable, it can receive and transmit energy to an implant. Concretely, the user will pass a magnesium coil above their subcutaneous implant to “ recharge ” it. Once the small coil inside the skin has received enough energy, it will be able to transmit some to the medical implant located lower under the skin.

This charger ultimately only serves as a bridge between an electrical device external to the human body, and an implant placed subcutaneously. In their study, Chinese scientists explain that they carried out an initial experiment on rats.

The latter were feverish, so it was decided to implant an anti-inflammatory system in them to lower their temperature. Drained of its energy, this system was placed with the charger developed by the scientists under the rats’ skin.

By recharging everything for a few minutes, anti-inflammatory molecules began to be released and the rats saw their temperature drop little by little.

Ethical questions

Although the scientific prowess is undoubtedly there, the international community did not rejoice in unison at the publication of this study. For several scientists and doctors, this new advance “ goes too far ” in Man’s ability to treat living things.

Others, on the other hand, think that this advancement is one of the best things that could have happened to the world of bio implants. The latter will, whether we like it or not, be more and more numerous in the future, and we will have to find a solution to recharge them efficiently. The presence of a subcutaneous charger can be an interesting solution.

Several scientists nevertheless question the medium-term risks of wireless charging through skin tissues. The circulation of electromagnetic current between the two coils could facilitate the development of several diseases, such as skin cancer.

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