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MIT researchers have developed needleless shots like the ones administered by Dr. McCoy, and it's cool technology:

"The injector is built around a Lorentz-force actuator--a small, powerful magnet surrounded by a coil of wire that's attached to a piston. When the system is charged, it interacts with the magnetic field to produce a force that pushes the piston forward. This force ejects the drug at a pressure and velocity strong enough to get through skin, but supposedly feels no worse than a mosquito bite."
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22 comments
 
HOLY AWESOMENESS!!!!!!!!!!! Now i can eliminate the fear of my doctor AND feel like i'm being treated by Dr.Beverly Crusher!
 
I totally read that as "needless" and thought Hell,the medical profession invented those decades ago!
 
Dr McCoy: My God, man! Drilling holes in his head isn't the answer! Now put away your butcher knives and let me save this patient before it's too late!
 
The Navy has been using air injectors for years now, and they are especially unpopular with the recruits.
 
I've had an air injected shot before, it hurt more than when they use a needle.
 
+Jordan Nash Exactly-- I was wondering when it would come up that the military has been using these for a while now. However, according to the website, it's "more precise" and can allow for various depths. But indeed. I was thinking the exact same thing... now, if only they could give the "Peanut Butter" shot in a slightly less painful way...
 
I think the military shots are "old tech".
 
This is not the same as an air shot. These epic geeks at MIT have developed a new way of giving injections that is virtually painless. Plus, we are now closer to the world of Star Trek. so don't hate on a Trekkie's miracle
 
The air shots are indeed an old technology (at least thirty years) and have issues (motion between injector and subject can cause severe lacerations).
 
I get allergy shots, so this makes me soooooooooooooooo happy!
 
They also tend to malfunction and this makes them rather painful. I had my Army inoculations done by air shot it is not a pleasant memory.
 
+Michael Park I never get allergy shots for fear that I am not letting my body build an immunity. I am reconsidering though, since my immune system doesn't seem to learn. Do they work well for you?
 
Now, when is this ACTUALLY going to see widespread use? It seems like I hear about a new variety of needle-free injection technology every few years, but whenever I go to the doctor, it's the same-old, same-old.
 
+Daniel Hinojosa Yes, but its tiring to wait 30 minutes after getting them to leave. It's a bit annoying, but doesn't hurt. Shouldn't be having this discussion in the comments LOL.
 
What's the difference between that and the air-actuated injections I got in boot camp in '94?
 
+andres Pereda In that explanation, the only difference is the magnets. The dosage could be altered on the air-actuated device and they used air so the pressure could be adjusted as well. So far, the only thing I see is the magnets.

That's all well and good for creating a more portable injector. However, the concept is not new. It's simply being implemented differently.
 
I have never felt a mosquito bite before.... am i odd? or was that the point?
 
In the early 70's, we were mass inoculated at school for measles with a gun type device that felt like a puff of air on your arm.  How is this a "new" invention? 
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