Medical Anesthesia Can be Much Safer

Safe, Non-Intrusive, Non-Chemical, Electronic Medical Anesthesia

A Possible Treatment for Parkinson Tremors

A Possible Area of Research for Spinal Cord Damage Resolution

Around 1990, roughly one patient in every 10,000 would die from the direct effects of anesthesia! That has greatly improved, but there are still tremendous risks to patients of powerful anesthetic drugs.

Using a Bracelet to create electromagnetic fields to inject artificial neural pain signals to send to the brain to condition the brain to ignore later actual pain signals from that arm or leg.

  • In February 1999, I did the following experiment (on myself) of the Configuration II of this concept: I spent less than $100 on a Signal Generator, a common solid-state audio amplifier and copper wire which I wound into a coil which had a suitable impedance for the amplifier. coil of wire that creates artificial pain sensations for the brain
    I placed the coil of wire around my upper right arm, resembling a Bracelet of multiple turns of copper wire. I set the Signal Generator on a Sawtooth waveform shape and pre-set the frequency at a very low value of 2.0 Hertz. A very slight tingling sensation seemed to appear in my entire arm, which seemed to resemble the feeling when we say that our arm has "fallen asleep". I slightly increased the frequency of the Signal Generator and noticed that the sensation became more intense. When set somewhat higher, there was the sensation of pain throughout my arm, so I turned the frequency back down somewhat.

    Over a period of three or four minutes, all such sensations faded, and I was able to increase the frequency setting. After each increase in frequency setting, there was again a slight sensation of tingling or slight pain, which always faded over the next several minutes.

    After some minutes, I had been able to increase the frequency setting to around 7.0 Hertz and after a couple more minutes, there was essentially no sensation of any sort from anywhere in my arm.

    My entire arm was effectively anesthetized! I put fingers in hot and cold water, with no sensation at all. Tapping on any part of my arm with a stick or a hammer had no sensation. I even prodded some fingers with a sewing needle. Assorted other attempts at stimuli all resulted in no detected sensation, except for very, very minor effects. I believe that if I had continued to raise the frequency of the Signal Generator, even those sensations would not have existed.

    I believe that a medical operation could have then been performed on my right hand or wrist or lower arm. No injected or inhaled chemical anesthesia had been necessary, but the necessary numbness condition had been accomplished.

    As might be expected, I could NOT get my fingers or wrist to then move, as would be the case if an arm was "asleep".

  • The explanation for this is relatively simple. All the nerve signals to and from the hand and lower arm pass through a bundle of nerves near the center of the arm. These signals move as bioelectrical pulses along and within individual interneurons within the arm. Since the electrical pulses move along the arm and are repeated several times every second, they functionally act as though they are an alternating current of electricity. By the Laws of Physics and Electromagnetism, such an alternating current creates a magnetic field in the space surrounding the nerves (and therefore, arm). Signals pass in both directions through these interneurons in the arm. The signals which pass toward the brain are informing the brain of the condition of each of the nerve sensors in the skin and interior of the hand and lower arm. The strength (amplitude) of such signals is not very important, and the brain uses the frequency of received signals to determine how intense a stimulus happens to be at any moment.

  • I used the coil of wire around my arm to create an artificial pulsating magnetic field around my arm, which had the effect of inducing electrical pulses inside the interneurons inside the arm. This then acted as a biological alternating electrical current inside the nerve fibers, and therefore, sensation information was then carried to my brain. Since the brain only really cares about the FREQUENCY of the electrical pulses and not their amplitude, the brain had the sensation of a slight tingling when I started out with the artificial 2 hertz pulses. Each time I increased the frequency, the brain initially had the sensation of a more intense pain, but the brain needs to be available for thousands of other activities of the body, and so when the brain receives a CONSTANT nerve sensation signal, it soon NATURALLY blocks that signal. This continued until I would turn the artificial frequency up, where the brain would then again have an awareness of pain for a brief while.

    By gradually increasing the (artificial) frequency, the brain simply CHOOSES to eventually IGNORE those stimuli signals, as it has many other processes to be accomplishing and many other nerve sensors to be monitoring for the rest of the body.
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  • My coil of wire around the arm was creating a (varying) magnetic field around the wires of the coil, and therefore throughout the arm, at a frequency set by the Signal Generator. Those varying magnetic fields INDUCED (varying) electrical signals within ALL the nerves within the arm. These new, artificial nerve signals propagated in both directions. Therefore, the brain was receiving signals that were reasonable duplicates of natural nerve stimuli signals. The sawtooth signal pulse shape was not ideal as the natural signals are more like spikes, but my experiment confirmed that it was similar enough for the brain to figure out apparently sensory information.

    The brain has built in capabilities to ignore any nerve sensations when they have become either overwhelming or irrelevant. When someone has lost a limb in an accident, the brain is first overwhelmed by many intense pain sensations, but it soon chooses to ignore much of that pain in order to be able to do all the other things the brain then has to do. If someone has prodded or pounded on a finger for many minutes, the brain automatically gradually reduces its attention to those particular nerve sensations as being somewhat irrelevant, again, in order for the brain to be able to do its many other functions. In both cases, the brain has the ability to gradually ignore selected nerve sensations once it needs to allocate its efforts into doing more urgent things.

    By my coil of wire creating artificial pain sensations of very moderate intensity, the brain gradually came to determine that this was not very important information, and it reduced its attention to those nerve pathways (as being irrelevant information). As the artificial signals start to be sent at a higher frequency, where the perceived intensity of pain sensations are gradually set higher, the brain continues to reduce its attention to those specific nerve pathways.

    Once the frequency of the artificial pain sensations has been high enough for several minutes, the brain CHOOSES to entirely ignore all sensations from that nerve or nerves (then resembling the situation of a severed limb). In a sense, the brain has concluded that there are too many (identical) nerve signals coming in from those nerves, and there is no NEW information being received and the brain DECIDES to no longer recognize them as valid stimuli signals. That is much like it would do if the limb had been severed where overwhelming natural stimuli would be coming in to the brain.

    This resulted in the rest of my body being perfectly functional, but where if my right hand or wrist had needed a medical procedure, such procedure could have then been done. I thought clearly and was easily able to move my toes and to use my LEFT hand to poke and prod at the fingers and skin of my right hand and lower arm.

    Once I shut the Signal Generator off, and my brain was no longer receiving such overwhelming overload of signals from my right arm, my brain gradually again began to pay attention to nerve signals from my right arm, so over a few more minutes, all normal sensations and abilities returned to my right hand, wrist and arm.

    I had simply artificially duplicated processes that the brain has as part of its standard operation for dealing with severe trauma. No invasive puncture of the skin was involved, so there was no locus of possible infection, and no inhaled general anesthesia chemicals were used, which sometimes cause adverse reactions in some patients. The brain was simply encouraged to operate as it already knew how to do, but with artificial pain sensations at gradually increasing perceived intensities.

    After I completed this experiment in February 1999, I felt convinced that this (Configuration II) had great potential as a source of anesthesia for many Hospital procedures on limbs.

    This is the least sophisticated Configuration of this process, of somewhat crudely overwhelming the brain with too much information such that it uses conventional processes to then ignore further signals from those nerve pathways. The Configuration I is a much more sophisticated version of the same general concept. It is based on continuously monitoring the signal traffic within the interneurons of the arm (by monitoring the surrounding magnetic fields that the moving electrical charges create, again, nothing invasive). Once a pain signal above a preset frequency is detected (indicating an intense sensation) a computer would detect this fact and then generate an IDENTICAL signal, but electrically inverted, to then be sent to a SECOND coil of wire further up the arm. The premise of Configuration I is to track an INDIVIDUAL nerve's signal and then electrically and magnetically "null it out". In this case, instead of overwhelming the brain with information to process to force it to ignore inputs, the Configuration I is intended to cancel out any and all intense signals to the brain, so that they never even arrive! In this case, the brain is never even aware of any pain sensations (such as due to a medical procedure) and so it has no knowledge of any pain at all. In this case, the entire body and brain functions perfectly normally, and only individual interneurons' pain signals are affected by being cancelled out. Interestingly, GENTLE sensations should still be as always, where a slight pressure of a Surgeon's hand on the surgery site would likely be sensed normally!

This presentation was first placed on the Internet in March 1999.

An entirely new approach to Medical Anesthesia is presented here. No skin penetration is involved and no chemicals of any sort are involved. Rather than introducing strong chemicals into a patient's body, which sometimes have undesired side effects, and which can provide a locus of infection at an injection site, this approach is entirely non-intrusive. The Configuration II system (below) simply convinces the patient's brain into numbing the nerves in a specific limb, by gradually increasing artificial pain signals which arrive at the brain. With such a continuous inundation of incoming nerve sensor information, the brain soon naturally chooses to reduce its sensitivity to signals from that limb. THE PATIENT gradually turns up the "intensity" of the signals going to the brain, causing the brain to more and more limit sensitivity to incoming signals from that limb. A simple dial on the device is marked with an indicator of when the limb is numbed sufficiently for a surgery to occur.

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The patient controls the setting of that control, so the rate of increased anesthetic effect can be at whatever level that provides minimal discomfort to that specific patient. No chemicals of any sort are introduced into the body, so adverse reactions would be eliminated. No skin penetration is necessary, so there is no locus of potential infection. Blood flow and all other bodily functions would remain normal, even in that affected limb, with only the single effect of numbing the brain's alertness to sensations of that limb. The remainder of the patient's body is entirely unaffected in any way.

When a biological signal impulse travels along a nerve, it acts as a traveling electrical charge, or an electrical current. A basic fact of physics is that changes in any such current create very weak magnetic fields surrounding the current. Fortunately, nerve signals do not have constant amplitude but pulse or oscillate, which creates the necessary changes in the nerve current and therefore the magnetic fields. These magnetic fields can be sensed by nearby coils of wire that create their own weak electric currents as a result. These facts mean that an array of EXTERNAL sensor coils, around an arm, for example, can sense and record the passage of the nerve signal, without skin penetration or even direct contact (Configuration 1 sensors).

This process also acts in reverse, where currents that are externally introduced into those sensor coils would have the effect of inducing a signal current within the nerves of the arm. With suitable sensor coil currents, this induced nerve signal current could be exactly equal to and opposite in polarity from (out-of-phase to) the initial nerve signal current. Another law of physics is that the result would be NO net current in the nerve (Configuration 1 output).

This suggests that pain signals during hand surgery might be entirely cancelled out or eliminated in this way. This method could provide extremely localized anesthesia, to individual nerve endings, while not affecting nearby nerve endings! The entire remainder of the patient's body would be completely unaffected.

The same device could be used in an alternate approach to accomplish the same end, local anesthesia without any need for chemicals or skin penetration. A preparatory period of inducing constant artificial discomfort / pain messages to the brain, with gradually increasing amplitude (actually frequency), would encourage the brain to begin to naturally ignore and finally block further pain signals from that limb (Configuration 2).

This much simpler and less expensive configuration would have the effect of a "local anesthesia" where that entire limb would be affected, but again, the remainder of the body would be completely unaffected.

Regarding Parkinson's patients, without actually solving the source problem in the brain, this device's input sensors could sense repetitive muscle activation sequences to limb muscles and selectively cancel them out. The patient would still have Parkinson's, but without the tremors.

Regarding patients with spinal injuries or other severe nerve damage, there are several possible applications. The OUTPUT device could be used with pre-programmed signals to introduce muscle activation signals into a limb, both to accomplish specific movements and to exercise the muscles. This approach would not require the insertion of wires and receivers into muscle tissues, as is now being researched. Another application of the device could be to regularly send (artificial) signals TOWARD the brain, in an effort to encourage the recently discovered natural nerve regeneration processes to develop.

This new approach has NO effect whatever on any other body system, so collateral damage should never occur. It involves no chemicals so there should be no addiction problems later. It involves no skin penetration, so the possibility of infection is minimized.

The technology involved is all fairly mundane. The concept is based on the fact that there is always a magnetic coupling possible for signals passing along a conductor as an alternating current. I have recently found out that as early as 1971, the US Government was using covert undersea "phone taps" placed near undersea Soviet phone cables (by the submarine Halibut and others, near the coasts of the Soviet Union), without ever actually electrically tapping into them, to do the exact same function. This proves that no incision is actually necessary to access the signals passing through the arm. The US Military apparently considers that technology to now be obsolete. It would be wonderful to get a surplus unit, or even the design plans of the pickup coil, since they had already refined the design long ago.

The only element of complexity, in Configurations 2, 3, and 4 is that there is a bundle of neurons that are each carrying separate messages to and from the brain. But this is identical to that submarine cable which had many bundled pairs of telephone wires each carrying separate conversations. Suitable computer processing can separate the individual phone or sensation messages.

Therefore, all of the technology for this device currently exists, and is even very well established and proven regarding performance.

During surgical procedures, anesthesia is regularly necessary. However, there is often considerable danger to the patient in the application of chemical anesthetics. A non-chemical way of accomplishing anesthesia may be practical.

The examples to be described for this theoretical new type of anesthetic procedure are for limb surgeries, hand, wrist, elbow, foot, ankle, and knee and the adjacent bones and structures. Application to more central parts of the body and head may later be possible. Often, a patient is given General Anesthesia for extensive surgical procedures in such limb areas. Even if Local Anesthesia is used, the chemical is generally introduced by injection, which will eventually enter the bloodstream with the possibility of adverse allergic reactions. The proposed electronic anesthetic method may make those chemicals unnecessary, reducing the anesthesia-related dangers to the patient.

The function of an anesthetic is to keep the nerve impulses from pain sensor nerves (nociceptors) from arriving at the brain or being processed by the brain. A number of theories exist as to how traditional chemical anesthetics accomplish this. The transfer of the pain signal from nerve cell to nerve cell at the intervening synapses might be inhibited. A similar effect might be instituted in the brain at signal receptors. The energy generation in individual nerve cells might be reduced. In any event, successful anesthesia keeps the brain from receiving and processing the pain sensations. Unfortunately, General Anesthesia keeps the brain from receiving sensations of any type and from any parts of the body. This may be an unnecessary condition.

Mechanism of a Pain Signal

Consider the injury-sensitive receptors in the hand. Both the fast A-delta nociceptors and the longer duration C fibers generate pulses that are transmitted along peripheral nerves to the spinal cord and then to the brain. In order for knowledge of that sensation to arrive at the brain, several intermediary nerve cells (interneurons) must conduct the pulses of the message to the brain. The passage of this message is done in quite a complex sequence of electrical and chemical processes. However, while that message is within a single cell, it moves along the length of that cell as an bio-electrical signal, called a spike discharge. It is an electrical signal because the cell permits the passage of electrically charged chemicals (ions) along its length.

In addition, once the pain message arrives at the spinal cord, spinal reflexes are also activated. These reflexes send an immediate response to muscle fibers in the area of the injury. Other reflex reactions also occur that may also contribute to the sensation of pain in the patient. In all cases of these reflexes the initial pain message must travel along the peripheral nerve system to the spinal cord.

This electrical signal does not have a constant amplitude (strength). It fluctuates in amplitude, with the rate of fluctuation being related to the intensity of the pain sensation. For very low-grade sensations, the frequency seems to generally be about 4 to 6 cycles per second. For very acute, intense pain, the frequency can be as high as 50 to 60 cycles per second. It appears that the actual amplitude (strength) of the signal is of minimal importance, as long as it is strong enough to get to the (thalamus in the) brain at the end of its path. The rate of the fluctuation of the amplitude of the electrical signal is the actual information that the brain is waiting to receive and on which it will act.

The Theory Behind Electronic Anesthesia

In terms of Physics, the passage of electrically charged ions along the length of an interneuron represents an electrical current. Since a pain sensation in a hand causes a pulsed repetition of such a current, at anywhere from 4 to 60 pulses per second, we have a time-fluctuating electrical current (varying in amplitude) passing along the length of the arm, carrying that pain message toward the brain.

This represents a variety of "alternating current" that is passing along a conductor (the interneuron) within the arm. The Physics of this necessarily has several consequences.

Any moving electrical current creates a magnetic field in the space surrounding it. A varying current creates changing magnetic fields in that surrounding space. In this case, if we would surround the arm with an array of sensing coils of wire, the changing magnetic fields (due to the fluctuations in amplitude of the electrical current within the various interneuron nerves within the arm) will create even tinier electrical EMFs within each of those surrounding sensing coils.

Notice that nothing intrusive is necessary. No needle or sensor needs to be inserted into the arm, so no locus for later infection is created. The sensing coil apparatus would not actually even have to be in direct contact with the patient's arm!

There appear to be at least three distinct uses of this approach.

Configuration I - Null Out the Pain Signal

Such sensor EMF signals would be in exact proportion to the amplitude changes of the message signal within the interneuron within the arm. We would have an exact record of the external effects of the signal traveling along the interneurons of the arm. It seems possible to then take those signals, amplify them, INVERT THEM, and then send the resultant signals to a similarly placed, identically configured array of output coils slightly farther up the arm (toward the brain). By feeding these amplified and inverted signals through those coils, we would create new magnetic fields surrounding the arm, precisely identical to but OPPOSITE the magnetic fields being produced by the pain message signal passing through the interneuron within the arm. The laws of electromagnetism tell us that this opposite magnetic field (which we are artificially supplying) necessarily will induce an electric current within that interneuron that is opposite that of the pain message signal.

This might first seem to increase the electrical activity within the interneuron, but it doesn't. When two opposite currents exist in any electrical circuit, the effect is that they act to tend to cancel each other out, so LESS current is the result.

By suitable choice of amplification, the specific coil placements of each set (input and output), and the distance between the two coil sets, it should be possible to EXACTLY "null out" the initial electrical current of the pain message. There would be no remaining resultant electrical signal to arrive at the synapse at the end of that interneuron. No pain message could arrive at the brain!

In a practical application, it might be necessary for a technician (or a computer circuit) to slightly adjust the amplification stage to precisely cancel out the pain message signal. This could be easily done prior to surgery by preliminary pinpricks in the hand, and verbal feedback from the patient. The entire input and output coil assemblies would be permanently mounted in a sleeve-like structure that would be firmly clamped around the arm to maintain consistent positions of all components. Precise orientation would be very important.

Rather than a technician manually adjusting the device's amplification, it might also be practical to have a third sensing coil assembly farther yet up the arm. Existence of a residual pain signal there could feed a computer circuit that would continuously automatically adjust the device's amplification to keep the signals nulled out.

In the event that a tiny amount of pain signal still occasionally passes through, it might also be possible to artificially ADD a greater amplitude pain signal that had a fluctuation frequency rate of a much less intense pain (as with the Configuration II below). The brain would then receive a pain message of a very minor pain, rather than the (nulled) higher frequency pain message of the intense pain of the surgical procedure.

After a surgery was completed, any of three possibilities could be used. The anesthetic device could be initially reduced in amplification while having the patient indicate the level of discomfort. This would gradually restore the real action of the normal interneuron. If the patient could handle the actual existing pain level, the device could be removed, and there would be no anesthetic recovery period. If, instead, the patient felt too much discomfort, the anesthetic device could remain in place. Either the amplification level would automatically degrade over a pre-set period of time, or an artificial low-pain signal (different frequency) could be introduced to give the brain a subdued pain sensation, as suggested above. The third possibility would be to prescribe conventional chemical painkillers during recuperation.

NOTE: The actual situation is quite a bit more complex than this. Instead of a single neuron carrying a signal, a whole bundle of neurons carry separate signals. This results in dipole, quadrupole, octopole, and higher modes of the magnetic fields created surrounding the arm. The sensing coil array needs to have enough component sensing coils to record this intricacy of signal, and the attached computer/recorder must have enough signal channels to handle all of that signal complexity. However, without having to actually process or analyze or even understand individual components of such complex EMF signals, it should be possible to amplify and invert all of them, to create the desired opposite polarity current(s) in the many neurons, to null out the pain signal.

Configuration II - Numb Out the Upcoming Pain

This is by far the simplest of these methods.

It is based on a well-known characteristic of the brain. When you cut your finger, there is maybe 15 seconds of extremely intense pain. Then, the sensation of pain subsides. If the cut is not of extreme severity, the pain sensation is entirely gone by 15 minutes later. The pain-sensor neurons actually continue to send signals to the brain, but the brain elects to gradually block those continuing pain signals. The message has already been received, and acted on, and the continued reception of those intense pain signals would inhibit the body from recognizing and dealing with stimuli in other locations of the body. This Configuration II of the device is meant to provide a continuous "flood" of pain-signal information to the brain, in a gradually intensifying amplitude program. The brain then uses its normal procedure of blocking those signals from being processed, thereby producing the effect of local anesthetic for that limb.

In this configuration, the input sensing coil assembly would probably not be necessary. The whole device could be far more primitive than in Configuration I above. Only a simple output coil assembly would be placed around the arm. For a number of minutes prior to a surgery, that output coil would be supplied with a alternating current source which had an initial frequency of, say, 3 cycles per second. This action would induce a very low-grade discomfort signal in ALL of the interneurons within the arm. The brain would be inundated by this continuous and monotonous mild pain sensation, both by the length of time that we supplied those pulses and by the fact that many parallel interneurons would each be supplying similar low-grade discomfort sensations to the brain. In general, the brain's response to such a pattern is to desensitize itself to those incoming signals, partly so it is not overwhelmed and partly so that it will be available to respond to other potential sensations anywhere else in the body.

As desired, the patient would gradually increase the frequency of the artificial pain signal impulses, to encourage the brain to even more completely block processing of signals from that limb.

The Configuration II setup can be extremely simple. A "bracelet" or actually a "doughnut-shaped" ring around six inches in diameter would be the form. Thin copper wire would be wound around the one inch diameter cross section of the doughnut, always in the same direction. Several hundred turns of wire could therefore be easily wound. (This is a different orientation of the coils from the windings of a motor or a solenoid.) A low frequency alternating current (variable from 3 Hz to 50 Hz) would be fed into the coil. The physics of this orientation would induce longitudinal alternating electric currents through the doughnut's opening, therefore, along the interneurons in the arm.

The frequency chosen would determine the level of discomfort/pain sensed by the brain. A frequency of 3 Hz should be initially used, with THE PATIENT gradually increasing the frequency as the brain progressively blocks stronger and stronger pain signals. Once the patient can have the frequency set at 20 Hz, there should be virtually no sensation of any sort from that hand, whether tactile, pressure, temperature, or needle penetration. As necessary, the frequency could continue to be increased to accomplish whatever deadening is necessary.

This configuration is by far the least complicated to build. The only variable open to research is the voltage of the pulses sent to the coils. Variations of that voltage would not affect the intensity of any pain sensations. It merely needs to be strong enough to induce the desired electric current in the interneurons in the arm.

For both of these configurations of this invention described above, this situation would seem to represent the ultimate in local anesthesia! The brain's association with every other part of the body would be unaffected. Only pain signals from that limb would be effectively reduced in importance.

For Configuration II, it seems that a fixed frequency, continuous alternating current signals might gradually sufficiently numb the brain's reaction to nerves in that specific limb. In the event that the effect is less than desired, it would be possible to gradually increase the frequency of our alternating current. Effectively, that would gradually give the brain the sensation that the level of pain was continually getting greater. The brain will certainly act to keep itself from being overloaded, and the way it will do that is by reducing its own sensitivity to those specific nerve signals.

The patient would likely feel no pain at any point, but rather just a low grade discomfort. As the artificial frequency gradually increases to the high frequency range, the brain will have gradually almost eliminated any sensations from that arm and hand. Surgery could be performed as necessary. After the surgery, the device could be removed, allowing the normal brain processing of signals from that area to gradually recover their original sensitivity. If that results in too much pain, then either chemical pain killers or a continuing operation of the device would be appropriate. If the device is to be used in such post-operative situations, the frequency would probably be ramped-down which would allow the brain to gradually regain its sensitivity for those nerves at a pre-set rate.

Again, as in the first configuration, nothing intrusive penetrates the skin, so there is no danger of chemical reactions or of later infections from a point of needle penetration.

There seems to be an additional feature of these methods of anesthesia that may or may not be considered an advantage. Blood flow and all other functions would not be affected. Where chemical anesthesia has widespread effects where all body systems are degraded, these two methods narrowly target the passage of the pain signal to the brain, with no other apparent effects on other body functions like circulation.

Configuration III - Spinal Cord Injury Recovery

Using basically Configuration I above, a computer would be connected to the output signals from the many sensing coils. A healthy person would do a single specific movement in one of the fingers and the computer would record the complex EMF sensor coils' results. Every possible movement of every joint would similarly be recorded in the computer.

This is actually an opposite application of Configuration II above. The pain modification usages are meant to cancel out or create new designed pain messages that are going toward the brain. This application would be in pre-recording the brain's instructional messages for various muscles to accomplish different tasks. This configuration would therefore be intended to affect signals going outward from the brain to the muscles.

Later, the computer would be instructed to supply the output coil assembly with one of the recorded EMF signal patterns. When that set of signals created its complex magnetic field around the arm, that should create induced currents in the various interneurons within the arm, that are duplicates of the signals that the brain would have sent. If that is accurately the case, the appropriate muscles would be activated as desired.

Rather than the brain supplying the complex signal pattern to activate all of the necessary muscle cells, the computer would have supplied them, at the location of the arm. The result should be the same, a finger or joint movement exactly as though the brain had instructed it.

Very recent research has suggested that regeneration of nerve cells might occur under some conditions. Early efforts seem to imply that intense nerve signal activity, either from the brain or from the muscles and nerve sensors, might encourage this regeneration. If this is the case, then this device might be especially useful. A computer could provide nerve pulses at any amplitude, at any frequency, and at any repetition pattern, for such research efforts.

The first of these two usages would not actually correct any existing damage, but would allow a patient a semblance of mobility. All movements accomplished would not involve the brain at all. The second usage would be in supplying repetitive nerve signals to the damaged areas, to possibly actually contribute toward nerve regeneration.

Configuration IV - Parkinson's Tremor Elimination

Using the first configuration of this device, the sensing coil assembly would be hooked to a computer. Whenever repetitive muscle contractions are sensed, either of two actions could be initiated. Either a signal-cancellation to the brain could be initiated, as in the nulling out method of pain control described above; or an artificial muscle command could be sent to the offending muscles to cancel out the brain's return message that would trigger the muscle movement (similar to the third configuration above, regarding Spinal Cord Injury patients). In either case, it should be possible to rapidly dampen out the tremor movements.

This effect should be possible even though the believed source of Parkinson's and the tremor phenomenon is in the brain.


The proposed device could have great application to pain reduction, both during surgical procedures and during acute periods of limnal pain from injury or disease or neurological disorder. It would also eliminate any possible side effects of the drugs presently used as anesthetics. Anesthetic effectiveness (of 'I') would be almost instant, so there would not be any need to wait for a chemical anesthetic to become effective. Overall cost of anesthesia would certainly be much less.

My research is at a state where a prototype system could be built. The cost of this prototype, and the following diagnostic research would be very nominal. The least expensive would be for Configuration II, and the efficacy of the device seems assured. The prototype device itself would certainly cost less than $10,000, with final devices far less. Research on the most effective orientation and position and number of the input and output coils is the primary aspect that needs development, to maximize the performance of this device. A pain signal travels to the brain at up to 300 miles per hour. The computer/amplifier that processes our signals have a certain necessary time for doing its processing, and additional delay in creating the output signal may be added. These two effects should probably be matched, such that the output signal could be applied to exactly the same initially sampled pain message, at an appropriate distance up the arm. (The message would have progressed a certain number of centimeters up the arm while the amplifier was doing its processing). This configuration should also minimize any potential system feedback.

It appears that an approach as described here (such as 'I') should be effective, in sensing and then nulling out electrical signals while they are passing along the axon of the interneuron cells. An alternative might be to try this influence at a synapse or a node of Ranvier instead. Electrically, there would seem to be advantages in those location but logistically it seems problematical because of the unique patterns of external magnetic fields that would exist surrounding those loci. The greatest value in attempting this process along an interneuron's axon (where the myelin sheath was continuous) is that the geometrical configuration is extremely similar at the locations where the sensor assembly and output assembly are located.

I feel certain that this research (for Configuration II) could be completely carried out in less than three months. As a research project at a Medical School, student volunteers could be used to give verbal feedback on the sensations felt from various temperature, pressure and pinprick stimuli of the hand. No intrusive or destructive or lasting effects would occur to any such volunteers. For a Configuration II apparatus, volunteers could simply indicate the level of de-sensitization with time, and their impression of the feeling due to the artificial signal.

My desire is that a public or private medical research institution will have interest in investigating this device. As a Physicist, I know that the laws of Physics appear to make all of the parts of this theory solidly based. It remains to experimentally confirm the effectiveness of this method of non-chemical anesthetic.

There seems to also be evidence that this device could be a good research tool for Parkinson-type tremors. There appear to be feedback circuits that develop that are some of the cause of such tremors. Those feedback circuits appear to involve brain participation, so there must be signals sent by the brain along the arm as described above, which could be cancelled out. It would seem that that would eliminate the tremor feedback circuits and stop the tremors, without the brain surgery that is lately showing promise of improving Parkinson tremors.

Research on this configuration would be likely to determine exactly where a single small sensor coil and an output coil could be placed to accomplish this cancellation of signal. That might suggest that a Parkinson's patient could have a minimal clothing sleeve to wear that would unobtrusively include the necessary components.

This presentation was first put on the Internet in March 1999.

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Bodyfat Analysis - 20-Compartment Percentage Formula
Improving Bad Heartburn, GERD, Reflux
Tobacco Negotiations Concerns The Tobacco, Cigarette Industry (1995)
Tobacco Negotiations - Update (2001)
Blue Streak Optical Phenomenon A Strange Visual Sensation
ESP, Extra-Sensory Perception. A Possible Mechanism
Exhilaration, Happiness, Vacations, Thrill Seekers
Déjà vu and other Unusual Phenomena - Deja vu
Conflict Resolution - A Unique New Approach
Learning Right And Wrong
GMO - Genetically Modifying Foods - The Physics, the Safety
Life Choices - Practical Discussion for Teens
Bodyfat - Modifying your Breathing (Respiration) May Reduce Your Bodyfat
IQ Test - Possibly a More Accurate Approach
A Partial Explanation of the Obesity Epidemic

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Carl Johnson, Theoretical Physicist, Physics Degree from Univ of Chicago