Doctors save left foot by attaching it to right leg

April 7, 2011 · Posted in innovation, problem solving ·  

Left foot attached to right leg saves foot

Doctors in China use many principles of Predictive Innovation® to save a man’s foot when it was cut off in an accident.

http://web.orange.co.uk/article/quirkies/Doctors_put_left_foot_on_right_leg

The man’s foot was cut off because of an accident. The damage to the leg prevented the foot from being immediately reattached. So there was a dilemma.

Must re-attach the foot to the leg immediately so it doesn’t die; but, we can’t attach the foot until the leg heals and grows.

One way to handle dilemmas is to invert then rephrase. Instead of immediately reattaching the foot to the same leg they attached it to the other leg. This was a great idea because the patient would not be able to walk while the other leg was growing and healing after moving it to the correct leg. Attaching the foot to the patients other leg is the perfect environment for the foot while waiting.

Other approaches have been tried such as freezing the organ to be reattached. Current technology can’t reliably prevent damage from ice crystals.

Another improvement could be using stem cells cultured from the patient and sprayed onto a growth matrix. This could accelerate the grow and the healing when the foot is reattached.

Another inversion is to let the foot die and attach a cloned foot. That technology has already been used for less complicated body parts.

3D Printer Brings Vision to the Poor

February 2, 2007 · Posted in abundance, economics, innovation, Intellectual Property, prediction, sharing ·  

The same week that I found all the articles on 3D printers I found an amazing example that could dramatically improve life for billions of people in developing countries who cannot access, nor afford, prescription glasses.

Last weekend I went to get a new optical prescription so I could buy new contacts. The technician used fully automatic devices to check me for glaucoma and calculated my prescription. I had experienced the glaucoma device but the prescription device was new to me. I instantly knew how it worked just from seeing it. The machine reflects a pattern off your eye then adjusts lenses in the device until the reflected pattern matches the original. Incredibly, quick easy and cheap!

My mind raced through all the potential innovations stemming from this device. I came up with a long list which I’ll get to in a moment. What I am more excited about is an extremely innovative application of this same technique. In 2002 a student at MIT used a similar technique as part of a system to make glasses for the poor. This was exactly what I had thought of. This innovation went from an idea in 2002 to commercial usable device in 2006. That is amazing.

One of the reasons the idea was developed in such a short time was the use of a 3D printer to create a prototype. But probably even more important was it solved a previously impossible problem and opened up a gigantic market. There are 1 billion people who need inexpensive glasses. Market for low cost glasses

There are two obstacles to providing eye glasses to people in developing countries. Read more