A robotic prosthetic arm can cost anywhere from $20,000 to $100,000. These expenses become particularly difficult for the parents of young children who outgrow their prosthetic limbs in just 12-14 months.
But the cost isn’t the only problem. There’s a host of other complications with traditional prosthetics, including a one-size-fits-all fitting approach that leads to skin irritation, chronic pain, and excessive sweating, a lack of training that can render the prosthetic unusable, and limited access to specialists. Because of their price point, though, amputees often settle for traditional prosthetics — sacrificing greater range of motion for a passive device that looks human-like but doesn’t move.
But the company called Unlimited Tomorrow is pioneering a new age in prosthetics with its 3D- printed robotic arms. Founded in 2014 by Easton LaChapelle when he was just 18 years old, the company is poised to become a leader in the prosthetic arm industry. Their True Limb device costs less than $8,000 and it’s even cheaper for children, priced at about $4,000. It is both functional and realistic-looking, serving as a mirror image of the amputee’s opposing limb, even down to the fingertips. And while the prosthetic arm is 60-90% cheaper than traditional prosthetics, many users say it’s far superior to market alternatives.
The process of producing the personalized prosthetic device include one-on-one consultation with the clinical team, 3D scanner shipped to the customer to scan residual limb, set of check sockets and video evaluation with the clinical team to achieve a perfectly comfortable fit, and then finally, 3D print of the personalized device.