Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Occupation: University researcher
Clinic: Rehaklinik Bellikon, Switzerland
Product: i-limb ultra revolution
Born with a congenitally missing lower left arm, Bertolt Meyer was fitted with his first prosthetic device when he was only three months old. The passive device he was fitted with at the time bears little comparison to the cutting edge prosthetic device he wears today: the i-limb ultra revolution.
Between the ages of 14 and 19, Bertolt wore a body powered "split hook" device, which was attached via a harness operated by the movement of his remaining arm.
In 1999, Bertolt was fitted with his first myoelectric prosthetic device. For the next 10 years he would be a very active user of his prosthesis and tried three different models over the period.
"The myoelectric devices were much better than my body-powered prosthesis, but they all suffered from the same shortcomings," explains Bertolt. "The functionality was very basic, as there was only a single type of grip available, and the lack of a palm made holding things like a mobile phone very difficult." "I couldn't hold a piece of paper without denting it, typing on a computer was impossible. Putting on a jacket was also awkward as the devices were all quite bulky, and often made travelling through airports a stressful experience as a result." "The coverings for the devices were also very poor quality and would stain permanently far too easily," he adds.
In late 2007, Bertolt was doing some research on the internet and came across Touch Bionics and its recently launched prosthetic device, the i-LIMB Hand. He was hugely excited by the technology and jumped at the chance to attend a demonstration of the device at his prosthetist's facility. He was fitted with the device in September 2009.
"It was a good day!" recalls Bertolt. "The i-LIMB Hand met all of my hopes and expectations, even just the fact that it offered a palm to perform the simple act of clapping my hands!" In 2010, Bertolt became one of the first people in the world to be fitted with Touch Bionics' i-LIMB Pulse product. The Pulse offered a host of upgrades including an aluminium chassis for improved durability, increased grip strength, more anatomically correct design, and Bluetooth-enabled software to activate a host of automated grip features and gestures.
After being fitted with the i-LIMB Pulse, Bertolt contacted Touch Bionics to say, "The i-LIMB Pulse is an extraordinary product that will vastly increase the life quality of many amputees. It is such an improvement." "The more I use it, the more I realize how superior it is in comparison with the regular i-LIMB. Opening bags, such as chips, holding a heavy shopping bag, holding the fork - these are just some things that work much better with the Pulse."
Bertolt became a trail blazer once again in April 2013, when he upgraded to the i-limb ultra revolution, Touch Bionics' most advanced myoelectric prosthetic device. The i-limb ultra revolution offers all of the benefits of past products and more, with advanced features such as a powered rotating thumb, 24 automated grip patterns and gestures, and a mobile application to easily access and program the device's features on-the-go.