Paralysed stroke patient in UK uses her mind to conduct orchestra



London, Mar 31: A paralysed stroke victim in Britain, who can only move part of her face as she suffers from locked-in syndrome, has conducted an orchestra by using her mind.


The woman, who is aware of her surroundings, but is unable to communicate as her muscles are paralysed, agreed to take part in a trial with scientists.

She was rigged up with electrodes to measure her brain waves and she then used her mind to play instruments on a computer.

"She was loving taking part in the research," the Daily Mail quoted Dr Palani Ramaswamy, of the University of Essex's School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering, as saying.

"She said the experiment made her feel back in control again for the first time since her stroke," Ramaswamy revealed.

Scientists in Essex teamed up with colleagues at the University of Plymouth to create a computer system specifically designed to help severely disabled people communicate more easily.

The woman wore a cap fitted with electrodes, which picked up different patterns in the brainwaves. She looked at pictures on a computer screen, which flashed at different frequencies causing different brainwave patterns.

The anonymous patient used her eyes to choose which instrument she wanted to play and used the frequency pictures to play different notes.

"What made this trial so innovative was that the intensity of how she was looking at the screen in terms of concentration offered even more control and, in this case, more notes for each instrument," Ramaswamy said.

"After a couple of hours of the trial the patient was able to play a mini-orchestra solo, just by brainpower alone," the doctor added.

The trial, which was carried out at a hospital in London, was the first time the technology had been used by a disabled person.


Copyright Asian News International/DailyIndia.com