The technologies that comprise the Elektrodress therapeutic electrode suit already exist and have been in use for some time. Maker Fredrik Lundqvist, MD has integrated a combination of electronic muscle stimulation (EMS) and vibration therapy into a modular wearable suit to help folks with Multiple Scelerosis, Cerebral Palsy, Parkinson’s and other nerve disorders relax and increase functionality and movement. Wearables like Elektrodress are exposing a larger audience to the therapeutic opportunities made possible by smart textiles. [Thanks, Laura!]

Find more medical and assistive technologies in MAKE Volume 29:

MAKE Volume 29

We have the technology (to quote The Six Million Dollar Man), but commercial tools for exploring, assisting, and augmenting our bodies really can approach a price tag of $6 million. Medical and assistive tech manufacturers must pay not just for R&D, but for expensive clinical trials, regulatory compliance, and liability — and doesn’t help with low pricing that these devices are typically paid for through insurance, rather than purchased directly. But many gadgets that restore people’s abilities or enable new “superpowers” are surprisingly easy to make, and for tiny fractions of the costs of off-the-shelf equivalents. MAKE Volume 29, the “DIY Superhuman” issue, explains how.