Neodymium implant procedure



  • I'd love to include a video, only problem is finding a friend not too squeamish to watch me cut open my fingers AND record it from various angles ;p I'll definitely aim for it though. Wont know anything definite until tomorrow afternoon/evening.

    Added update- added a layer of sugru around the magnets. You have to work fast, and its difficult to get the sugru into a thin layer. I definitely added some size to the magnets, and am jealous of the people who ordered theirs pre-coated in silicone. I have some errands to run, so will post pictures of the bioproofed magnets compared to their original state then.
  • edited January 2011
    @Ffaway If you can't get a volunteer, just place the camera on a flat surface with the best view of the process possible. Better some video than none I say.

    Will you be stitching the holes back up? Nate of Feeling Waves didn't stitch the first time and had issues with his first implant migrating to the surface.
  • I definitely intend to put at least 1 stitch in each hole- gauge 8 is pretty huge. Plus a bandaid around each finger :)

    I'll do what I can for video

    Final photo before implanting the magnets- image

    The sugru definitely adds some bulk to the magnet x_x 
    I tried emailing Nate, but he hasn't responded and its been almost a week if I remember correct. Will be going over his blog again, as it was fairly thorough. 

    And who ever is resizing my images, can you should me how to do it? Or is it automated?
  • Quick explanation of the mechanism behind the implants:
    Current produces a magnetic field. Right, fine, "but everyone knows that." The implants are attracted (or repulsed) by this magnetic field, producing a small movement inside your finger. That's what is sensed. That's how Nate's suggested method method of trying out the implants - supergluing a magnet to your finger - still works, whereas induced current being picked up by nerves would be stopped by skin resistance. (Also, the amount of current induced in an implant would be tiny, and a lump of copper the same size would perform better, if that was the mechanism.)

    Following from the theory, rather that directly from implantees' testimony:
    AC current produces a constantly varying magnetic field, which would vibrate an implant rather cause a single twitch, thus allowing AC (or switched DC, or any fairly regularly-varying current) to be much more easily felt.
    Would one of you kind implanted folk confirm or deny the second part, please?
    Can you feel a DC current, and if so, as easily as AC?
  • Earlier in this post, it was mentioned that the magnets don't work anywhere else but the fingertip.  I should probably point out that L mentioned in its talk that it was planning on experimenting with bigger and badder magnets to see if they can work in less sensitive places without shocking you.  Of course, it advises to let it do it; "Leave it to me to fuck myself up with this."
  • @Unqualified: The AC does feel like a vibration, and DC kind of feels like another static magnetic field (kind of).  I usually can't detect the DC as easily as the AC unless I'm looking for it.  The vibrations kind of jump out at you.  I encountered a 3-phase power supply the other day which was kind of cool to feel.
  • I'd like to briefly describe my implant procedure, as performed by the man himself, Steve Haworth.  This is just for referrence for others who may be attempting this themselves.  I'm sure this could be added to, and eventually we might have a "best practices" document for the procedure.  Note: I am not a body modification expert, and am only relating my procedure.

    1. Wash hands with soap and water, dry thoroughly.
    2. Finger was rubbed down with iodine(?) for 30 seconds or so in a circular fashion with a cotton swab.
    3. Hand is then put inside of a latex glove (use powder-free gloves, not sure if nitril gloves are acceptable).
    4. Gloved hand is then soaked in ice water until numb.  Note that the function of the glove is to keep the hand dry.  You don't want the finger swollen and wrinkled.
    5.  Glove is removed and an incision is quickly made.  The cut is made at an angle on the side of the finger tip.
    6. A hook (threaded for stitching later) is put into the skin flap.
    7. The magnet is taken out of the bag (don't just leave it around where it can collect contaminates).
    8.  The magnet is inserted.  Pull on the stitching thread to part the skin flap if needed.
    9.  Make sure the implant is placed deep enough and not too close to the incision.
    10.  Stitch the fucker up (1 ought to do it).
    11.  put on a band-aid.  Wear a band-aid until healed to prevent the stitch from snagging on something and ripping open the wound (it will happen).  I was changing bandages at least twice/day and used a product called H2O ocean that is sprayed onto the area. 
    12. Stitches are removed after 10-14 days using new toe nail clippers or surgical scissors.

    Also, it is important to heal before you go playing with your new ability.  Handling metal object for too long will cause the implant to try to force it's way out.  This has happened before.  It takes about 15-30 days before you will start noticing vibrations.  Mine seemed to get even better after 6 months.

    Happy cutting!
  • @DirectorX: I was on the money, then.
    /smugmode=on  (",)
  • edited January 2011
    Hi all,

    Unfortunately I was absent-minded enough to mail Lepht asking for some of the info mentioned in the talk ("e-mail me") before I read through the discussion on Blogger that lead me here. Hopefully L will be forgiving and send something along at some point anyway.

    From reading the discussion here it seems that the best route forward would be to buy some gold-coated magnets and then wrap them in Sugru for added protection. I would absolutely love to have these guys in my fingertips but I really don't want to mess up. I still have a lot of questions though:

    1. Mainly @DirectorX: Is it possible to have a magnet that is coated in both gold and sugru which is both effective and small enough to go into your fingertips? If not, which would you recommend, gold or sugru?
    2. Mainly @lichen: How did your 4 gauge needles turn out (if you have them)?
    3. I'll probably call Divine Canvas at some point and ask about their pricing, but has anyone happened to check already and knows how much a single implant would cost?
    4. What happens if I have these implants "installed" (for want of a better word) and end up needing e.g; an MRI scan in the future? Is there a risk of the magnets being pulled out of my hands?

    Assuming I go ahead with this (very likely) I'll post pics/video and information as I go. Currently looking at:

    2mm*1mm Neodymium Ni-Cu-Ni coated magnets (unable to find gold on Amazon UK)
    4-g needles or 6-g needles (yay international shipping prices! -_-)

    Sewing, aftercare and sterilisation materials will also be required

    I would consider the V&P parylene coated magnets as a last resort for self-use as the cost of procurement is quite high.

    Depending on whether or not I consider the benefits of professional installation with Divine Canvas (8-10 implants) to be worth the cost I might go to them, although I'd have to get myself to London first...

    Thanks guys :)
  • To your first question:
    I've never seen any magnets sold without eiter nickel or gold coating. So the gold shouldn't add any thickness. Without having done any special research into that, my knowledge so far says: our bodies have some issues dealing with metal. So I'd go with the sugru, but both will probably be better. (Personally I hope the nickel doesn't diffuse through the sugru...)

    To your 4th question:
    For all I know there is not a risk for that to happen (as in "risk" there is doubt). It WILL happen.  Maybe everything I have learned so far is exaggerated, but even then it would hurt a lot. They say to take out any metal objects because they will be torn out, guess what happenes with an active magnet...
    (yes, I got the impressive picture of house pulling a bullet out of a guys head using an mri in my head; not my only source, though)
  • get a "don't MRI me" tattoo. Putting an well visible notice in your wallet wouldn't hurt either. just in case someone think it's neccessary to mri you while passed out or so (i dunno policies so no idea if they are allowed to do that at all while someone is unconsciousness) 
  • I'd get a medical alert bracelet or something with "WARNING! Magnetic implants" or similar on it. Give the medical staff the information and let them decide. (I've had an MRI with orthodontic work still installed, so I've no idea anymore what is and isn't kosher.)
    I think it may require consent but I wouldn't put money, never mind the possibility of bodily harm, on that.
    @MrWizrd: Lepht's submerged in email these days, a reply might take a while. Iestyn's quote to me was 200 quid, but that was on a convention floor before he'd started doing them. It's probably the right area, but check with him before making up your mind. PM me if you want his email.
  • @MrWizrd: No, they haven't shown up yet. Only ordered them a few days ago, wouldn't be surprised if it took another week. I'll take pictures when they show up for size comparison.

    On another tangent, has anyone found a promising technique for local anesthesia? I've found a lidocaine 2% solution for sale at a generics website and a textbook documenting the process for a digital block using lidocaine injection, but I'm still really iffy about injecting myself with it. Anything less than that I've run into is simply a topical anesthetic cream, which would be easy but unlikely to provide any relief once the needle breaks skin.

    The following passage is the relevant material from the textbook I found. If you plan on going this route, do your own research. I'm not giving medical advice or suggesting anyone take this route, this is provided merely to share information.

    Quoted from Essentials of Hand Surgery, 1st Edition, Chapter 6: Anesthesia for Hand Surgery, Ed. Seiler, John Gray, (C) 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

    Selection of Anesthetic Agent

    The most commonly used local anesthetic agents are lidocaine (1% or 2%) solution and bupivacaine (0.25% or 0.5%) solution. Lidocaine is effective quickly but lasts 1.5 to 3 hours. Bupivacaine is effective over 15 to 30 minutes, but lasts 3 to 10 hours. A 50-50 solution of the two agents is effective in combining the benefits of both agents. Solutions with epinephrine should not be used in blocks around the fingers and hand because of its vasoconstrictive effect. The maximum dose of anesthetic agents is lower when given without epinephrine. The maximum dose of lidocaine is 4.5 mg/kg. For adults, the maximum total dose should not exceed 300 mg. The maximum dose of bupivacaine is 2.5 mg/kg. The maximum total dose of bupivacaine should not exceed 175 mg. The addition of 1 mL of sodium bicarbonate solution per 10 mL of anesthetic alkalinizes the solution and decreases discomfort during injection. As with any injection, it is important to aspirate before injecting to avoid an intravascular injection of the agent. Early symptoms of toxicity from an intravascular injection include headache, ringing in the ears, numbness in the tongue and mouth, twitching of facial muscles, and restlessness. As the systemic levels of the agent increase, convulsions can result, followed by respiratory arrest and arrhythmias.

    The rest of the chapter discusses nerve locations in the hand and proper injection points and technique for different types of blocks, and references the following source: Ramamurthy S, Hickey R. Anesthesia. In Green DP, Hotchkiss RN, Pederson WC, eds. Operative hand surgery, 4th ed. Churchill Livingstone, New York, 1993, pp. 22–47.

  • edited January 2011
    Thanks for your responses :) I e-mailed DC ([email protected]) earlier this morning, I don't suppose it would do much good sending a duplicate e-mail. I'll give it a day or three and if I don't hear back I'll call them or PM :) But yeah, £200 is a little out of my budget (especially since i'd eventually like a few.)

    In the likely case it's looking like self-installation is my only reasonable way forward. I might follow @lichen's example and pick up those magnets and then coat them with sugru, depending on what the cost to have pre-coated parylene ones instead is since I'm slightly concerned about the lack of a gold coat and how that compares to Ni-Cu-Ni. Not sure about which size needles to pick up (4, 6 or 8) either. Time to do more research...
  • edited January 2011
    @lichen: Wow... I wouldn't dare unless it was something I could just swab onto skin. Lidocaine is some serious stuff, and I have zero idea about whether or not posession is above board in the UK without some sort of license anyway...
  • edited January 2011
    @Ffaway I was reviewing your procedures on
    selfmodifier and you mentioned that you won't be eating anything for
    four hours before you begin. That might not be necessary since
    the reason for nil-by-mouth stems from the risk of vomiting when under a
    local anaesthetic; and since you won't be under one you might be able
    to face the pain without having to go hungry as well. (Source: Several
    operations and plenty of time in hospital due to Spastic Diplegia, a form of Cerebral Palsy.
  • @MrWizrd: Lidocaine is commonly added to creams (typically at around 4% from what I've seen) and sold as a topical numbing agent for waxing, cracked/irritated skin, and the like without a prescription. If goods like these are sold in your country then it isn't a restricted substance. That being said, injections are serious business, not to mention that syringes are somewhat annoying to obtain and dispose of unless you have other reasons to be using them.
  • edited January 2011
    Since BMEZine is currently down for maintenance, here's a Google Cache of a great article on these implants.

    Edit: Just received a reply from DC. The cost of an implant is £200. The magnets are coated in silicon. Lestyn is going to India from 27th Jan to 18th Feb, and is in every day except Thursday.

    Edit 2: After reading Nate's blog, I've decided I'd be much more comfortable with using a Parylene magnet. I live in the UK. Would anyone be interested in splitting the cost of a bulk order to lower the price for everyone?
  • Just to quote you "As the systemic levels of the agent increase, convulsions can result, followed by respiratory arrest and arrhythmias." respiratory arrest? arrythmias? of the heart? Both of those can kill you so be very, very careful should you decide to go with an injection.
  • Remember the rule: if it's happened to someone on the drug, it goes on the list of side-effects. Yes, injecting is dodgy; intramuscular is less so, though. The quote above is mainly a warning about overdosing. Anyone who needs to be warned of the dangers of anaesthetic overdose has an admirable lack of imagination.
    Which is not to say you can take this lightly; there's a reason anaethesiology is a specialty.
  • @mrwzrd that is merely for my comfort. I've done a lot of body modification under the influence of various substances and found it helps to have a clear head and stomach when it comes to piercing.

    Update on status- i feel kinda lame. Waiting to coerce a friend to do it for me meaning definite video. Excuse the fact that it's a stoner performing the operation. Still arranging a time for us to operate
  • Just got a response from Nathan of Feeling Waves, thought I'd share.

    "Glad to hear you are interested.  The implant hasn't given me any trouble at all.  The biggest obstacle to healing seems to be keeping the magnet in place.  Since the coating is "slippery," it will move around until the skin heals around it.  Since the incision tends to be smaller at the bottom and larger at the top, the magnet tends to push out.

    I would think the best method would be to make a small incision and dig out a pocket inside, then push the magnet in.  The stitch seemed to help, but may have been unnecessary."
  • edited January 2011
    @nemogrinds posted the quoted in a defunct thread, I've moved it here.

    "10 Sterile Body Piercing Needles 6g 6 GAUGE LOT NR
    1/4" Dia NdFeB Sphere Magnet, Grade N45, Ni-Cu-Ni Plated with Mirror finish, Magnetized through the Poles 

    Aside from cleaning and sterilizing mats. Sorry for my brutish blunt manner. Just wanna know so i can get cutting."
  • Okay I have just started to read this thread so I dont know if someone has discussed this but I have sevral questions. I had this idea occure to me yesterday did some google searching and discovered Im not the first one to want a powerful magnet in my body. But has any one put one any where but there hands I want to put one in my bicep or under my chest close to my nipple lol. And make it much larger also what process do you use to bioproff them * I belive thats the terminalgey make it safe for my body lol
  • @Bmbm873:  So far as we currently know, there is no other place but the fingertips that these magnets work, because those are the only places nerve-rich enough to do so (well, I guess you could try putting them in someone's clitoris).  If you have some ideas for places with a sufficiently high nerve density, though, I'd be happy to hear about them.

    As for how to make them bigger, you can either a) get a bigger magnet, as long as it fits in your fingertip, or b) stack magnets.  You'd have to do it S-N N-S S-N etc., though, not the other way around.  In any case, I don't think the size matters; it might increase your ability to pick stuff up, but I'm not sure it would do much in the way of increasing their sensitivity.

    And finally, bioproofing.  We recently did a group buy of industrially-produced magnets, and they came already coated in Piracetem, which is a bioproof material.  But, if you don't want to get those, your best bet is either Sugru, which is a mouldable silicone rubber, or hot glue.

    Hope all that helped,


    P.S.  Thanks for asking how to bioproof things; that's a good thing to put on the FAQ.
  • Well I deffently dont know if im diong this yet or not its just a idea and knowledge is power so the more I know beofre commiting the better.


    Also why do you have to have high never desity in the area..

  • OakOak
    edited May 2011
    Regarding nerve density, it actually depends on what your goal is.

    To gain a sort of sensory perception that allows you to feel electromagnetic fields, high nerve density is required due to the very fine, small movements of the magnet. Additionally, the size of safely implantable magnets is small, so the movements can only be felt in a very small area. The more nerves, the better and clearer the sensations. And on top of that, a lot of electromagnetic and magnetic fields are fairly small - an easily maneuverable body part is advantageous in finding and exploring fields. In an area with few nerves, an implanted magnet's movements would likely only be felt from very strong electromagnetic fields - perhaps so strong that all you would feel would be pain.

    Now, if you want it for some other reason, then this may not be the case. Implanting magnets that are slightly larger than those that are being commonly sought (those mentioned by @Ian when referring to the group buy) in a location like your arm could allow you to attach relatively objects - things like the small screws used in computer cases. Most people don't appear to feel that this use is worth the cost/risks/pain.

    I think you meant to say that the magnets from the group buy are coated in Parylene C. Sounds like you have nootropics on your mind. :)
  • @Oak:  Argh, I did not just do that.  For some reason, I didn't think before posting.  Yes, I meant Parylene C.

    @Bmbm873:  Re-reading your original post, it seems that your goal is being able to stick objects on your arm/hand/finger/whatever.  In that case, you don't need a nerve-rich area to do so, but you might be interested to know that, while that's a nice, cute little side effect, that's not the main goal.  As @Oak explained, the primary goal is sensory extension; namely, giving ourselves a sense of weak electroception (the ability to passively feel electromagnetic fields).

    I should warn you, though, that if you try to use the magnet as, well, a magnet too much, the skin above the magnet gets pinched and dies, and your body rejects the implant.  That's the main reason why this isn't the primary use of the magnet.

    Also, it seems you found us through Google.  So, if you google something like "implant magnets" we come up fairly high on the results?  If so, that's awesome; it might mean we're getting more hits.

  • Ya I could care less about being able to feel magnetic field no offence.

    To be honest I want to stick something to my arm like my car keys lol
  • @Bmbm873
    Car keys? Not going to happen without a strong magnet - the kind of strong where you definitely don't want implant it. Nothing but pain will come of such an attempt. I can tell you, it hurts to have a small magnet get tugged by a strong magnet in the wrong way. I don't want to imagine what a magnet of that strength would feel like, trying to twist and move around inside me. Ick.
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