Updated on 28 November 2012
Innovation is the new mantra for medical devices
The medical devices industry has progressed by leaps and bounds in the recent past and this is evident from the several innovative strides that some of the firms in this sector have taken. US-based company Sunshine Heart, which is also listed with the ASX, developed C-pulse Heart Assist System for patients living with class III heart failure. The device comprises an implantable inflatable cuff that wraps around the ascending aorta and is connected to electrical leads that sense and track the rhythm of the heartbeat.
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Another company, WEB Biotechnology of Singapore, has designed Spyder, a tiny, wireless ECG sensor and display that revolutionizes personal ECG and heart rate monitoring with its small size and ease-of-use. Besides displaying ECG waveform, the device provides accurate measurements of a person's heart rate and metabolic rate.
Australia's HeartWare has developed implantable Left Ventricular Assist Devices for the treatment of advanced heart failure. It is a miniaturized implantable centrifugal pump capable of producing up to 10 liters per minute of blood flow. Similarly, India's I2iHealth has developed Lung Flute, a non- invasive device, which is used for sputum induction by patients of chronic respiratory disease. The device generates low frequency sound waves when the user blows through the device. It has been designed in such a way that these sound waves travel back to the lungs and liquefy deep-seated sputum, which is then expelled by huff coughing.
These are just few of the evolving technologies in medical devices being designed and developed across Asia and the landscape is getting more fascinating by the day. The medical device industry is striving to deliver healthcare solutions in a smarter way and diagnostics and multinational companies are playing a big role in this effort. Companies are leveraging on renewable and sustainable energy, remote patient monitoring, combination devices and medical robotics allowing high precision surgery to revolutionize healthcare in many ways than one. One of the trends is towards miniaturization which, the industry believes, will direct future innovation in medical device design.