Bioengineering is a fascinating discipline that combines traditional engineering with health care issues. As discussed in an American Society of Mechanical Engineers report, bioengineers are working to help improve the lives of patients living with different conditions in a variety of ways, including by designing new digital tools, software platforms, instruments, and other devices. In general, bioengineering research refers to the design and development of innovations that in some way support the system of health care. For starters, MRI machines and dialysis machines are common place medical devices that can be attributed to the field of bioengineering. There is no question that progress in this field of engineering will continue in line with technology development that improves the process's health care and patient outcomes.
As a discipline, bioengineering has a broad scope, with developments in a number of areas. The article will discuss some of the key areas where so far bioengineering has had a positive impact on the health care industry. This include the following:
According to a Study, biomechanics includes researching the human body, how and why it moves, and how biological processes within the body respond to external pressures. The article noted that biomedical research is primarily concerned with how and why the musculoskeletal system behaves in the manner it does in the health care setting. A number of theories are used by engineers in this field to direct their research, including classical mechanics, physics, chemistry and math.
Since this field of study is primarily concerned with how and why the human body works in some respects, biomechanical practitioners tend to work either in science or product development, with an emphasis on sport and athletics, clarified an article by the Houston Chronicle. Indeed, since biomechanics conduct research that can be used to support athletes and others who are physically active, this discipline has greatly enhanced health care. Biomechanical work, for instance, helps to inform the production of items related to sport, such as fitness equipment, shoes, etc. In addition, the article detailed how professional athletes also often recruit biomechanics to study their movements and develop improvement strategies. This research is crucial not only for enhancing athletic performance, but also for reducing injury risk.
Research in this area includes the design of tools and systems that can be used within the human body, as outlined by the Biomedical Engineering Society. bio mechatronics goal is to build devices that can improve the lives of patients with some form of disability or disease in which certain functions are totally compromised or lost. For example, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's biomechatronic laboratory is working on the frontlines to improve the healthcare industry by developing technologies that allow those with reduced or impaired mobility to start moving again which is a great advancement.
Although much of the laboratory's work remains in the design stages, examples of innovations that could improve the lives of many living with limited mobility include: devices that allow neural prosthetic control, implants that facilitate contact between prosthetic devices and the central nervous system, and exoskeletal devices that can be used to improve running. Indeed, as the above tool shows, work in this field has the potential not only to benefit disabled people, but also to improve healthy physiological functions, improving competitive running is a significant example and bringing disabled people back to their lives is a great achievement.
Perhaps one of bio mechatronics most notable achievements so far, again courtesy of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is the biomechatronic leg joints developed by Hugh Herr, published by the European Patent Office. Nicknamed the bionic knee, the system essentially allows amputees to return to a normal lifestyle, allowing them to walk in a fully functional manner. This is because the device depends on computer technology and sensors, allowing the device to mimic traditional knee movements. Although prosthetic technology has been around for a long time, this innovation is more advanced by eliminating all limitations in terms of mobility from the life of an amputee. The article emphasized that, should they so desire, Herr's system also helps amputees to compete athletically. With nearly 200,000 amputations in the U.S. each year, this device, along with other biomechatronic inventions, will undoubtedly continue to make a huge positive difference in the lives of patients with different forms of limited mobility.
Biomedical electronics is the bioengineering division dedicated to developing, designing and maintaining devices used in health care environments such as hospitals and clinics, explained in an article by the Biomedical Engineering Society. As a discipline, biomedical electronics has significantly enhanced the healthcare industry by designing and implementing tools that are commonly used today, such as intensive care unit monitoring systems, CT imaging systems, dialysis machines and surgical lasers. Nonetheless, practically any system designed to test or treat patients in a clinical setting falls within the competence of biomedical electronics. Bioengineering practitioners will either work in a research capacity, work to develop new platforms, or in a maintenance capacity, help repair biomedical electronic equipment, and track their proper use.
Tissue engineering, a relatively young practice remains very much in the research stages, but it is widely agreed that the practice holds considerable promise in terms of enhancing future health care practices. Tissue engineering, as outlined in an article published by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, is essentially the development of synthetic or natural human tissue in a laboratory, tissue that can then be used to help patients with a range of medical conditions, from severe burns to failed organs. Cartilage, skin, and even liver and muscle tissue are tissues that have been successfully developed. However, the article emphasized that the use of engineered tissue on human patients is still rare.
However, as outlined in an article in Nature Magazine, tissue engineering holds huge promise for the future of health care due to high demand for alternative therapies for chronic conditions such as organ failure, severe tissue damage, etc so the work is still going on to develop further advancements and technologies in health sector to make patients lives easier and happier.