Category Archive: Medical Devices

Aging Population Prompts Portable Medical Device Development

As the US faces a growing population of older adults and lifestyle choices catch up with us, the need for complex, portable healthcare systems becomes more apparent. Smaller respirators, ultra-portable CPAP machines, therapeutic electrical muscular stimulation, ultra-portable ultrasound machines, electronic diabetes monitoring systems, and other products are all increasing in demand.

Throughout our lives, but especially as we age, we visit the doctor to check how our systems are functioning. Sometimes, the cause of an ailment can’t be seen from the outside. During these circumstances, medical imaging technologies allow us to see structures inside the body to determine what could be causing a patient’s symptoms.

By the year 2025, the global medical imaging market is expected to reach $55.7 billion. Demand for smaller, portable diagnostic devices is driving some of this growth, along with rising rates of chronic illnesses that have been linked to increasingly sedentary lifestyles and on-the-go meal options.

Poor health habits are known to contribute to Type 2 Diabetes, high blood pressure, and other increasingly common issues. Wearable health monitoring devices are becoming more popular as they help people monitor their conditions without inconveniencing them. Portable  devices put patients in control of their health, giving them insight on their diseases without a lengthy trip to the doctor’s office. And when it is time for a doctor follow-up, all the information is readily available for review.

Modern diagnostic devices are also providing faster access to test results. The FDA recently cleared a portable scanning device that can check for ischemic heart disease in about 5 minutes. This is a benefit not only for patients, but for doctors and Emergency Departments overall. Determining whether chest pain is coming from a heart attack, or a less threatening condition can reduce wait times and help staff prioritize the highest risk patients.

These types of advances in the medical field are already having a major impact on people’s quality of life and time to diagnosis. With our expertise in precise extrusion and compounding to achieve mechanical performance and electrical conductivity, we are able to service this growing industry in the healthcare space. We look forward to seeing what new developments arise in the coming years, and how we can help bring these products to life.

To learn more about our custom configurations and capabilities, feel free to contact us online.

Understanding the Importance of EMI Shielding in Medical Devices

Electromagnetic interference (EMI) are disturbances generated internally or externally that affect electrical circuits through induction.  They can affect all types of electrical equipment and can come from both natural and man-made sources. The disturbance can cause equipment to malfunction or even stop working.

In everyday life, EMI isn’t a problem that requires us to be all that concerned, as a large number of consumer electronic products are well designed for minimization of the effects of EMI.

Medical devices can be a different case, however.  Historically, these types of devices are difficult to shield from EMI, and the companies that are producing these products have had great difficulty satisfying both the FDA and FCC with respect to EMI issues.  When medical devices are affected, it can be damaging and even life threatening. For example, a ventilator can change breathing rate causing a patient distress due to EMI. Things as simple as cell phones, solar magnetic storms, thunder storms, and even ignition systems can cause problems with EMI. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has acknowledged the problem and sought to find solutions as well as informing the public about the problems associated with EMI in medical instruments.

The good news is that shielding can help protect sensitive devices from EMI. While this is a good idea for any type of electrical equipment, it is imperative for high-tech devices that are used in medical scenarios such as hospitals and laboratories. Vanguard Products Corporation manufactures EMI shielding products and general rubber products to help with EMI concerns.

Vanguard’s EMI shielding products are used to reduce EMI exposure to electronics and equipment in conjunction with proper enclosure design. Applications currently include blood analyzers, DNA analyzers, and other laboratory type of equipment.

Visit us at the 2017 MDM West/Electronics West/Pacific Design & Manufacturing Show, booth 3378 at the Anaheim Convention Center from February 7-9 to see how we can help minimize EMI shielding issues in your medical electronics.