Why Circuit Boards Are Vital to the Medical Industry

December 7, 2020
Printed circuits in medical industries

Electronics are an essential part of the medical industry. The industry is constantly evolving in order to deal with new challenges and demands from medical personnel and patients alike. Every sector of healthcare and medicine has felt the impact of the electronic age.

Smartphones, tablets, and iPads have quickly replaced the use of conventional products in order to monitor and record data. As well, given the current global pandemic, many patients have resorted to virtual appointments in order to get the medical advice that they need.

Here, we will discuss medical manufacturing in Toronto and how circuit boards play a vital role in the medical industry.

The Role of PCBs in Modern Medical Technology

PCBs (printed circuit boards) are essential in the healthcare and medical sectors. Innovation has been at the forefront of the medical industry, as changes have been made in terms of how we diagnose and treat patients. Research strategies have also evolved in order to become more streamlined and automated.

More work will have to be done in the field of PCBs in order to enhance medical equipment and devices. Medical PCBs are currently being used in order to make pacemakers and other cardiovascular-related devices.

Many imaging applications, such as MRIs, also make great use of PCBs in order to screen for various disorders. Even monitoring devices, such as body temperature monitors, also utilize PCBs in order to function.

Different Types of Medical Devices that Require PCB Assembly

The medical use of PCBs will only grow in time, as the demand for more efficient and concentrated medical devices increases.

Many implantable medical devices (IMDs) will require the use of highly specialized PCBs. For example, people who are hard of hearing may be able to use a cochlear implant. The implant may allow the hearing impaired to process sounds, allowing them to hear dialogue and music with minimal issues.

People who are at great risk of cardiac arrest or other heart-related trauma may also benefit from an implanted defibrillator. As for people with epilepsy, they may benefit from a Responsive Neurostimulator (RNS).

An RNS is implanted into the brain of the patient, and is often used in lieu of medications. It is often used as a last resort for people who suffer from severe seizures. An RNS will monitor the brain activity of the patient 24/7. When it detects abnormal brain activity, it will release a mild electric shock.

The PCB manufacturer will be provided with very specific details and specifications according to the unique needs of the patient. The specifications will also need to be precise, as the implementation of the implant will be unique. It is important to realize that a PCB is a highly complex component of an IMD. There is no static or uniform standard that all PCBs follow.

Diagnostic and Medical Imaging Devices

Diagnostic and medical imaging devices play a pivotal role in the delivery of healthcare in our modern world. PCBs are required in order to manufacture MRIs, ultrasound equipment, and CT scanning machines.

The aforementioned medical imaging techniques and devices are a must in order for healthcare providers and doctors to diagnose problems and guide their treatment modalities.

The Use of PCBs in Monitoring Devices

Blood pressure monitors, blood glucose monitors, and even body temperature monitors require PCBs in order to operate as intended. Other devices that require PCBs include electrical muscle stimulation equipment, X-ray computed tomography, infusion fluid controls, pacemakers, nerve stimulator units, EMG activity systems, and flow rate and dispensing systems.

The PCBs that are used in most medical devices are made precisely for such medical instrumentation. They are prudently designed in order to adhere to a wide range of care and lab settings, as well as several test scenarios.

Recent Advancements in Healthcare Thanks to PCBs

Electronic health records (EHRs) were very poorly integrated systems in the 1980s, 1990s, and even 2000s. Many healthcare systems were not connected in the past. This means that each system was kept separate, and handled orders and documentation in an isolated manner.

Today, such systems have been amalgamated into a singular and cohesive platform. Speed and efficiency have increased substantially in order to get patients the help they need and deserve.

While EHRs have been updated in order to consolidate patient data, they have the potential to modernize data-driven medicine by being a valuable tool. The only way to improve the success rates and results of medical treatments and medicines is to collect pertinent data on the population.

Mobile health has also become very popular today, as patients have increasingly opted to take their healthcare on the go. In fact, many reports have stated that the mobile healthcare industry is expected to surpass the $20 billion mark by 2019.

Smartphones can be used in order for healthcare workers to freely send and receive medical records and data. Mobile health can also be used by doctors in order to document data and tasks, order supplies and drugs, and research patient queries on the fly. At this rate, cumbersome wires and cords will become a thing of the past.

Worn medical devices have also risen in popularity in recent times. In fact, the wearables market is expanding at a growth rate of 16.4% a year. The goal is to manufacture medical devices that are not cumbersome and that can be worn easily by patients.

Top-of-the-line sensors are used in order to collect valuable patient data. A worn medical device may also save a person’s life in the event that they have fallen and injured themselves. A wearable device can even inform medical professionals if one of their patients is about to develop an infection from a cut.

In sum, PCBs have advanced greatly in recent years, allowing for intuitive, quick, cost-effective, accurate, and reliable medical devices to be made.

Circuits Central

If you would like to learn more about medical manufacturing in Toronto please visit our website. Circuits Central specializes in the pre-manufacturing, manufacturing, and post-manufacturing of PCBs and medical equipment.

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