Engineering Quality of Peripheral Nerve Stimulation
What is quality of sensation and why are we working towards engineering quality?
Quality of sensation refers to one's perception of a stimulus not including its intensity, protensity or locality. Some common descriptors which may help in understanding what quality is include "pins and needles", "electric", "vibration", and "pressure".
Traditional Peripheral Nerve Stimulation (PNS) technologies often fail to produce qualities native to tactile sensation and instead are more often perceived as "tingly" or "electric". We are working towards engineering the quality of PNS to enable the perception of pressure, light touch, and textures.
We are currently in the modeling stages of this work and are exploring the use of multi-contact and non-rectangular waveform stimulation paradigms to engineer a more biomimetic recruitment of the afferents to study quality of sensation.