How groundbreaking new technology is helping people with paralysis

Scientists have implanted two patients with a brain-computer interface that allows them to resume tasks such as texting, emailing and even banking online.
3:01 | 10/28/20

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Transcript for How groundbreaking new technology is helping people with paralysis
Now we have that medical miracle first here on "Gma" this morning, the groundbreaking new technology helping people with paralysis to email and text not with their hands but weir minds. Will reeve has those details for us, good morning, will. Good morning, robin. Beyond the physical struggle of paralysis, it's the loss of Independence that can be the hardest to bear mentally and emotionally but this morning, new hope for people living with paralysis, attempt to regain that Independence, take back control of their world using direct thought. It's like science fiction come to life. This man is working on a computer but he's not using a mouse or a touch screen. He's using his mind. In a study released this morning scientists have implanted two patients with a brain computer interface that allows people to paralysis to resume tanks like texting, emailing and even banking online. I think it's best described like a bluetooth out of the brain. Reporter: This flexible metal coil is the key. Placed in a blood vessel in the brain, it takeslectrical impulses from the motor cortex which controls the muscles in our body and in combination with a computer eye tracker ssly transmits the desired action to a computer. Our patients have been able to learn to text message, to email, to use a word processor, to use the internet and then to do critical tasks like shopping and banking. Reporter: Philip o'keefe is one of the first to have it implanted in his head. The father of two diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease als now has trouble controlling his fingers and elbows. I can't write for the pain anymore. If I try to type on the keyboard it's one hand, one finger. Reporter: Computer work was becoming difficult for him. But a few months after he received the implant in April he sent his first email. Absolutely mind-blowing and to stare at a screen and think about hitting the send button and sending an email was just -- it was -- I really can't describe the sensation. Reporter: Since then he's felt much more independent. We're so excited about his mental well-being and H connection to the outside world. Reporter: While the device needs more study and is not fda approved the results are promising. This is exciting because it's a minimally invasive way to record signals from the brain with very high fidelity and very high signal T and that's holding a lot of promise. Reporter: As with any successful trial this is a key first step enrolling patients in I U.S. Trial will be among the next steps towards what researchers believe could be an innovation that'll help millions of people with paralysis around the world. George. Boy, fascinating and encouraging. Thanks very much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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