The field of medical technology advances every year as new devices are developed, tested, and approved for patients. Companies from around the world research and produce new medical devices targeted toward promoting health and wellness, providing therapeutic actions, aiding with procedures, and more. Some may even be life-saving.
Some of the many innovative new devices being tested and employed include:
A doctor in Ireland has developed a disposable electronic chip that works with a sensing platform to quickly diagnose diseases. Made from molecularly engineered materials, it is touted to be accurate and inexpensive.
If successful, it could be invaluable for controlling the spread of viruses and epidemics. It is still in clinical trials, and may be brought to market within several years.
Boston Scientific manufactures this permanent heart implant, designed for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. It is said to reduce the risk of having a stroke while eliminating the need for lifelong use of certain blood thinners.
WATCHMAN is used in the femoral artery and closes the left atrial appendage. This is designed to prevent blood clots from forming and was approved by the FDA about three years ago.
Pixium Vision in Paris is developing a bionic vision system called Prima. If successful, it will be able to restore vision to individuals with diseases like macular degeneration.
Prima is implanted underneath a patient’s retina and works with customized glasses that contain a miniature camera. The camera processes visual images, and projects them back to the implant. Then, the electrical impulses are relayed to the optic nerve and to the brain.
Patients with damaged vision may be able to have much of it restored with this device.
Used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension, Remodulin is a prescription drug administered through an intravenous tube and an external infusion pump. Medtronic has introduced an implantable system that is comprised of an intravascular catheter with an infusion pump. This device received FDA approval on July 31 of 2018.
These four devices are but a handful of the new products at the forefront of new medical technology. Although many appear quite promising – and also exciting – it is always important to consider the risks.
Rigorous testing takes place before the devices come to market, but human errors can still occur. This is true not only for the testing, but when the devices are implanted, monitored, and removed. Medical practitioners must be thoroughly trained on their usage, including implantation, routine maintenance, and removal.
Patients must also advocate for themselves. This is done by researching the device, including its history, risk and benefits, and possible side effects.
These new devices offer great potential for the future. For some, however, unknown hazards may be associated with their usage. Though medical devices must undergo stringent testing methods and protocols, there is a long history of defective parts and other issues that make them open to legal actions.
Medical devices are supposed to help patients, but sometimes do more harm than good. If you or a loved one has been adversely impacted by a medical device, turn to an experienced Philadelphia medical product liability lawyer at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler. Call us at 215-569-4000 or 800-369-0899 or complete an online form for a free consultation. We are based in Philadelphia, and serve clients in Delaware County, Chester County, Philadelphia County, across Pennsylvania and New Jersey.