Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) allows the artificial excitation of nerve fibres by applying electric-current pulses through electrodes on the skin’s surface. This work involves the development of a simulation environment that can be used for studying transcutaneous electrotactile stimulation and its dependence on electrode layout and excitation patterns. Using an eight-electrode array implementation, it is shown how nerves located at different depths and with different orientations respond to specific injected currents, allowing the replication of already reported experimental findings and the creation of new hypotheses about the tactile sensations associated with certain stimulation patterns. The simulation consists of a finite element model of a human finger used to calculate the distribution of the electric potential in the finger tissues neglecting capacitive effects, and a cable model to calculate the excitation/inhibition of action potentials in each nerve.
Araiza Illan, G., Stüber, H., Friedl, K. E., Summers, I. R., & Peer, A. (2019). A simulation environment for studying transcutaneous electrotactile stimulation. PLoS ONE, 14(2), [e0212479]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0212479