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Biomedical Engineering

-biomedical engineering-
by

Chris Nicdao

on 11 August 2011

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Transcript of Biomedical Engineering

Biomedical
Engineering? What is it? How did it start? What does a biomedical engineer do? ...how do I become one? How does it help people? What kind of does it have? Simply put, biomedical engineering is the design and
development of medical technology for the benefit of society. So... Prosthetics are part of biomedical engineering. As are pacemakers. And cochlear implants. And x-ray machines. Biomedical engineers are the people
who develop all of these things. And since medical technology has been around
for a long time.... ...so has biomedical engineering. Prosthetics were in use as far back as Vision correction has been around since the 13th century, impact So while biomedical engineering is only
recently becoming recognized as its own field,
it has continued to develop throughout history. To this day, engineers are making
advancements in medical technology that are improving society's overall quality of life. For example, new developments in mechatronics and communications technology have allowed patients to receive urgent life-saving treatment even when a qualified surgeon is not immediately available. This is done through remote surgery, a practice that has been in use for the last few years. The surgeon inputs commands and movements
into a computer.... ...which transmits the commands via optical fibers... ...and replicates them through a robot, which performs the operation with surgical precision. During the last 100 years, important devices such as
dialysis and heart-lung machines have been
developed, providing patients with temporary
substitutes for damaged organs. allowing those with
impaired eyesight
to see almost perfectly. ancient Egypt. This allows patients without access to skilled doctors to
receive urgent surgery, especially heart surgery. In fact, there are certain robots that can perform major surgery with zero human input, making the process completely automated. This may mean that, in the future, robotic surgeons
will be able to be deployed to isolated areas, such as
war zones and remote settlements, providing
treatment for people who would otherwise have
no access to it. As previously mentioned, prostheses are one technology developed
by biomedical engineers,
specifically in the field of
biomechatronics. The purpose of prosthetics is to
simulate and replace the functionality
of a lost body part. Due to recent advances in
biomechatronics, modern
prostheses are coming
closer and closer to perfectly
replicating natural body parts. Pictured here is
Oscar Pistorius, who
was temporarily
disqualified from the
Olympics... ...because his ankles and
feet did not tire out like
most people's. Hailey Danisewicz, a 20-year-old university student,
is part of a clinical trial for a new
type of prosthetic leg - one that
reads the brain's electrical signals
rather than muscle movements. This means that the leg functions based
on the user's thoughts - one step closer
to a natural leg than older prosthetics. And while even this bionic leg cannot provide
the sense of touch provided by a natural human
leg, continuing research in biomedical engineering
means that this could become possible in the near future. As mentioned before, biomedical engineers are the people
who create, design and develop this medical technology. Generally, a biomedical engineer will have a degree in
biomedical engineering or a related engineering branch.
This involves a 4-to-5 year-long university course. In fact, many universities now offer
a biomedical engineering program. After this, there are several career paths available to take. For most careers involving biomedical engineering, a masters degree or higher is required or preferred. A biomedical engineer may work in a place where medical equipment is either used or developed, such as a medical research or manufacturing facility, or a hospital, depending on the specific branch of biomedical engineering specialized in, such as rehabilitation engineering or medical imaging. A biomedical engineer may work with a team, which may include other engineers and/or other professionals in their line of work, to develop and test medical technology. Additionally, a degree in biomedical engineering can qualify someone for a related career, such as a management position at a manufacturing plant or an engineering occupation at a pharmaceutical company. A biomedical engineer's work involves research on the systems of the human body and the way they interact, as well as how medical technology can be used to assist or improve the body's functions. This research is used in the development of medical devices. To this end, biomedical engineers use their knowledge of engineering in conjunction with their knowledge of the body's systems and mathematics. A biomedical engineer can expect to work a standard 40-hour week and earn 70-90 thousand dollars a year. The work of biomedical engineers can help individuals within society lead healthier,
and in turn happier, lives. Advancements in medical
technology allow patients
and their families, as well
as the general public, to
have a higher standard
of living. These improvements in medicine mean that those who require healthcare, especially the physically disabled, are able function in society as normal
and continue to lead productive lives. Improvements in diagnosis and imaging also allow doctors to better
understand and predict diseases. However, as with all
medicine-related fields,
social and ethical
issues do exist. For biomedical engineers working directly or indirectly with patients, the privacy and wellbeing of the patient must be of the highest priority. The engineer must make sure that they respect the patient's health and privacy. Even for engineers who do not work directly with patients, the health and safety of the consumer should be the first priority, especially since a person's wellbeing often depends on the medical technology available to them and the health and safety issues associated with that technology. One such health and safety concern is biocompatibility: the reaction of the body towards a given material.
A material that is rejected by the body, such as an implant that has caused an immune response, can cause significant health problems, including significant pain, swelling and inflammation around the affected area. To avoid these problems, a biomedical engineer must ensure that the materials used in a given piece of equipment are suitable, and that all applicable factors are taken into account during the design process to ensure that the final design can adequately perform its task. Another potential problem is that a device's design may not be adequate for its purpose. For example, a silicone implant may leak while within the body, poisoning its user, or a walking frame may buckle or break, potentially injuring its user and requiring a replacement. A biomedical engineer's occupation is both challenging and rewarding, and requires both training and skill to perform effectively, while addressing issues of both safety and ethics. Biomedical engineering itself is important to society, as the innovations it creates in medical technology, as well as the improvements made on existing technology, are important for society's overall quality of life. Bibliography http://www.biomedicalengineerjobs.org http://www.mshealthcareers.com/careers/biomedicalengineer.htm Careers, Training, Nature of Work http://careerigniter.msn.com/articles/detail/29594171 Current Projects http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_Pistorius http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-04-19/news/ct-met-bionic-limbs-study-20110419_1_muscle-reinnervation-prosthetic-brain-controlled http://blogs.wttw.com/moreonthestory/2011/04/20/the-bionic-leg http://www.howstuffworks.com/robotic-surgery1.htm http://web.archive.org/web/20060820022121/http://www.dlmag.com/1653/robot-successfully-completes-unassisted-heart-surgery.html http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2002/oct/06/health.medicineandhealth Issues and Impacts http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/book/9780750682275 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_ethics http://bioethics.od.nih.gov/ http://fie-conference.org/fie2010/papers/1524.pdf Historical Background http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biomedical_engineering http://www.embs.org/docs/history001.pdf http://www.marquette.edu/eng/biomedical/history.shtml http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=ancient-egyptian-prosthet http://www.antiquespectacles.com/history/ages/through_the_ages.htm Introduction and Conclusion http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biomedical_engineering http://www.wpi.edu/academics/Depts/BME/Resources/biomed572.html http://www.engineersaustralia.org.au/colleges/biomedical/what-is-biomedical-engineering/what-is-biomedical-engineering_home.cfm http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sn0bOX5Hau 4 http://abiomedicalengineer.com/ http://www.mshealthcareers.com/careers/biomedicalengineer.htm
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