Advantages of a Prosthetic

So, here's an idea for you lot: replacing a limb for utility. I'm talking all function, no flesh. Is there anyone on this board that, if given the chance, would volunteer to lose an extremity? I'm intrigued with the idea but as a disclaimer I'm not to the point of finding the nearest saw and hacking away. If you've had the idea like me, I want to know what you would lose and why. Do you have body integrity identity disorder (BIID)? On the off-chance that someone who reads this is currently suffering, why are you dissociating from that body part? What would you gain from the procedure? 
More along the lines of what I came here for, what would you invest in when it comes to newfound utility? using myself as an example, I think there are a few good self defense applications for a prosthetic.  
  • Integrated taser/pepper spray
  • a prosthetic could very well protect against a stabbing
  • it could house a weapon for emergencies
  • the applied force of a prosthetic is naturally better than a regular hand.
    General utilities could include

  • housing a battery

  • integrated chip on the shell
  • flashlight
  • etc
    If anyone has any resources they can provide, I would appreciate it greatly. As for papers on BIID, I've read a few but am open to more. Finally, I want to hear your stories, ideas, anything pertaining to the subject.
    thanks, Limb


  • Oh, I already plan on doing this one day, hopefully sooner rather than later. If you truly believe in a science or field, you must be willing to sacrifice a part of yourself to further said field.

    I think BIID doesn't apply here; the desire for a prosthetic, IMO, isn't based on the desire to amputate a limb or be paralyzed/disabled, as BIID usually and notably presents itself as, rather, amputating a limb is the step to get to a legitimate, non-BIID related goal: to have a prosthetic limb. Now, I think most people would argue whether or not the desire for a prosthetic over a real limb is BIID or not depends on the reasoning behind wanting the prosthetic over the real limb. I think that argument is redundant and meaningless. At the end of the day, anyone who seriously wants a prosthetic limb over a real one wants it because of the capabilities and possibilities that prosthetic limbs have over real limbs. A good prosthetic arm, the ideal prosthetic arm is better than a real arm. We're just not at that point yet, but it is definitely coming, and I believe that is why many people, me included, want to have a prosthetic limb. To become involved. To be test subjects. To eventually have the ideal prosthetic.

  • The prosthetic you're looking for is called a pocket.

  • That's funny. Same thing I was thinking. No discussion of controlling it via the nervous system or having sensation? Nearly all of your suggestions are attempting to be tactical in nature. How often do you really believe you're going to need your hidden weapons? Cause I use my meat hand every single day..
  • @Cassox said:
    That's funny. Same thing I was thinking. No discussion of controlling it via the nervous system or having sensation? Nearly all of your suggestions are attempting to be tactical in nature. How often do you really believe you're going to need your hidden weapons? Cause I use my meat hand every single day..

    Well, I prefer novelty to being tactical. I'm very unfamiliar with sensation in prosthesis, is that an innovation that's common place? Most of what I listed was spitballing, more general ideas than what I'd personally prefer, and of course I use my soft meaty hands more than pepper spray. Also, I'm new to the site's formatting so bare with me as i learn to adapt.

  • @Frank said:
    The prosthetic you're looking for is called a pocket.

    Do they make those on arms? you have a valid point that I'm more or less overlooking for the sake of brainstorming. A prosthetic with more than one use is a reality I think we should explore these next few years. Wouldn't it bee cool if you could charge your phone on the go, and still have pockets for other things?

  • Sensation of prosthetics is pretty new, but has been shown to work in some best-case scenario amputation and prosthetics. They're mighty expensive and the sensation is extremely limited, but hey, it is a good start on eventually making prosthetics that feel like organic limbs but don't suffer from the drawbacks of organic limbs. This discussion is nothing but a hypothetical, and I don't think there's anything wrong discussing some fun hypotheticals of the future of body modifications.

  • That's very true. I had no idea that was a thing. I'm probably gonna have a binge of watching videos on that now after class lol thank you.

  • Check out some of the videos on the John Hopkins prosthetic labs.
  • edited January 12

    Just IMO prosthetics for utility aren't very likely to take off until (1) a prosthetic that combines a BCI (like Neuralink) with adequate sensory feedback is developed, and (2) people stop being so attached (pun intended) to their limbs. Regardless of whether or not a prosthetic is practical, most people would never have to think twice before saying no to replacing a healthy limb with a prosthetic. They have fantastic potential, but most people aren't wired to be okay with removing a healthy body part and replacing it with something artificial. That could change too, but it could take a long time for society to be able to accept the idea of replacing a healthy limb with a prosthetic.

    As for advantages, I think a prosthetic would be most helpful for mitigation of later problems/pain (i.e. getting prosthetic fingers if you're predisposed to arthritis in the knuckles). Another interesting use would be the creation of a "super surgeon", where people could integrate with machines to perform significantly more delicate procedures (like brain surgery) with very little effort. Imagine a perfectly steady hand, with high-resolution sensory feedback and all, able to be manipulated accurately down to fractions of a degree at a time. It's all got a lot of potential. Nice topic, OP.

  • With the current level of tech and cost, It does not seem worthwhile to replace a functioning limb with a prosthetic simply for fun.

    I agree with your sentiment about pain management being a motivator for prosthetics. As a personal testimony, I have psoriatic arthritis that only affects my left arm. I get occasional joint pain, and as I age it will inevitably become more frequent and intense. In a few years or decades, I would seriously consider replacing that arm. Even so, having a compelling motivator and a biohacking mindset, I would thoroughly explore other options like nerve-deadening before taking such a drastic step.
  • Funny thing, replacing parts for the sake of pain management is already a thing: That's what total knee / hip replacements are entirely for.

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