Friday 7 January 2005

Today's Brain Link

From the BBC :
A medical device which allows a woman to sleep by switching off an implant in her brain has been stolen.

Rita Carlisle, 53, from Knaphill, Surrey, suffers from a condition called essential tremor.

The stolen remote control gadget sends out pulses to calm the condition and can be switched off so she can rest.

Ms Carlisle, who now struggles to sleep, was carrying the device and £600 cash in a handbag which was stolen in Farnborough, Hants, on 23 December.

She said: "I'm extremely tired, I'm getting three to four hours' sleep a night, I can't turn the machine off.

"I had my second operation on 13 December and it was my first outing after leaving hospital.

"I just wish the people who stole the machine would give it back.

"They have totally ruined Christmas and the New Year. There was �600 in my bag as well so they have had a good Christmas out of me."

Ms Carlisle says she is hopeful, but not certain, that the hospital caring for her - the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in central London - will be able to replace the device.
I'm sure they'll be able to. Just look up the records, find the frequencies the controller operates on, get a new controller and change the firmware or hardware frequency setting accordingly.

Very, very good records are kept of frequencies and codes used to program and control therapeutic devices. Accidental reprogramming of heart pacemakers etc is obviously undesirable.

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