Medical technologies of the future – Medical technology will continue to be characterized by a very high potential for innovation in the future.
The Top 10 Most Promising Medical Technologies UPDATED – The Medical Futurist
Medical technologies of the future – Medical technology will continue to be characterized by a very high potential for innovation in the future. The futurologists of the Futuremanagement Group present the most important trends and technologies up to 2030.
Global population growth, the increasing proportion of older people and the growing middle classes worldwide are causing the demand for medical technology to continue to rise. What challenges will medtech companies have to face in the coming years in order to continue to be successful? In a globally intensifying competition and in view of ever shorter development cycles, in the future it will be more important than ever to bring innovative products and solutions to the market quickly and as a company to be able to react flexibly at all levels and in all directions. Futurologists from Futuremanagementgroup AG, Eltville, have determined and summarized which trends in medical technology will occupy the industry in 2030.
Secure competitive advantages with big data solutions
Due to the increased use of networked medical devices, the amount of available health data is growing rapidly. Big data analytics makes it possible to recognize patterns even in unstructured data. With big data solutions, medical technology companies can secure competitive advantages, generate potential savings and open up new business areas. Patients benefit from personalized medicine in diagnosis and therapy based on similarity analyses.
Virtualization is the basis for increasingly realistic insights into the human body. Advances in the field of imaging methods, 3D simulations and virtual and augmented reality applications make it possible, among other things, to make better diagnoses, to plan and train processes, treatments and interventions, such as operations, in more detail through simulation and to make treatment steps more understandable for patients close.
3D printing could solve donor organ shortages
Medical 3D printing, in turn, opens up various fields of application for medical technology. This includes education and training on 3D-printed models, the production of patient-specific prostheses and implants, and long-term bioprinting, i.e. the printing of blood vessels, skin and organs using the patient’s stem cells that have been propagated in cultures. In 15 to 20 years, the latter could solve bottlenecks in donor organs and, for example, the problem of the immune system.
Salutogenesis asks about the causes of good health. Interest in health-promoting lifestyles and behaviors is growing. More and more people want to take more personal responsibility for their health and are willing to spend money to do so. The second healthcare market is thus increasingly opening up opportunities for companies to open up new business areas. Examples: control, coaching, communication and emergency call systems, for example in the smart home area.
Next-generation human-machine interfaces enable medtech companies to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Despite the increasing complexity of the systems, intuitive operability and thus also safety and cost-efficiency in the application can be guaranteed with new human-machine interfaces. Associated software solutions form the basis for tailor-made (after-sales) services and future sources of income.
Sensors improve medical care
Sensors are also playing an increasingly important role in medical technology. Sensorization enables new forms of medical care, for example in the field of remote monitoring, such as telemedicine, ambient assisted living, body area networks and in-body systems. New and ever smaller sensors are also improving the portability, precision, performance and range of medical devices. Another important area of application is prosthetics.
Automation and robotization also enable numerous fields of application in medical technology, from the assembly and production of medical devices themselves to the automation of processes in the medical sector, such as sterilization, laboratory analyzes or the manufacture of prostheses, to the use of robots to relieve hospital and nursing staff . Highly specialized robots are also increasingly being used in operating theatres, especially in the field of minimally invasive surgery.
Even the smallest products are getting smarter
Digitization and miniaturization are the basis for the increasing dematerialization of medical devices. So-called embedded systems make even the smallest products ‘smart’ and enable completely new fields of application, such as highly portable devices for areas with poor medical infrastructure. Medtech companies can also enter the mass market with inexpensive devices that allow a growing number of health-related tests to be carried out at home.
The increasing dematerialization of medical devices, in turn, enables models, so-called wearables and implantables, which patients and health-conscious people can wear on or in their bodies either temporarily or permanently. Examples are contact lenses that measure blood sugar levels, smart textiles that monitor vital parameters, and implantable chips that monitor medication intake or release substances themselves, such as contraceptive hormones.
New materials ensure improved product properties
Material innovations form the basis for the next generation of medical devices with new or improved properties in terms of durability, stability, biocompatibility, hygiene, deformability, raw material consumption or recyclability. Examples are carbon fiber reinforced materials in prosthetics, magnesium as a material for implants, innovative technical textiles or nanotechnological processes for structuring and coating surfaces.
Greater individualization in medicine should improve patient care and expand the efficiency of the healthcare system. Medical technology solutions are individualized prostheses and implants (e.g. through 3D printing) or electronic tablets that release active ingredients in the body in a targeted manner and tailored to the real-time state of the patient. The individualization of medical technology goes hand in hand with the need to manage significant amounts of data.
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