Medical Devices to Watch in 2014

It’s a new year and with it comes many new opportunities for the medical device and equipment industry. 2014 looks to be a promising year, as many innovative technologies have gained the spotlight. We’ve written about the increasing number of mHealth apps and shared stories of exciting new devices on our social media channels. Here are three medical devices to look out for this year:

1. The Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System – The Bionic Eye

The Argus II

The Bionic Eye, officially known as the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System and made by Second Sight Medical Products, Inc., was approved by the FDA in February 2013. It is the first artificial retina for people with a degenerative eye disease called advanced retinitis pigmentosa (RP) that can lead to blindness. With RP, light-sensitive cells slowly degenerate, causing people to lose side vision, night vision and eventually central vision.

The Argus II, equipped with a small video camera, a transmitter mounted on eyeglasses, video processing unit and implanted retinal prosthesis, performs the functions of working cells in the retina. This allows patients to gain some sight back by perceiving images and movement. The device is approved for people with RP that are at least 25 years of age.

2. NeuroPace® RNS® System – An Epilepsy Solution

NeuroPace® RNS® System

NeuroPace, Inc. received approval from the FDA in November 2013 for its NeuroPace® RNS® System, an implantable device for adults with seizures that have not been controlled with two or more antiepileptic drugs. The device detects when abnormal electrical activity occurs in the brain and normalizes brain activity through counteractive electrical stimulation. This process is called responsive neurostimulation.

The results from a clinical trial were promising, showing a 37.9 percent reduction in seizure frequency for those that were treated with responsive stimulations. In addition, 55 percent of patients who used the device longer than two years received a 50 percent or greater reduction in their seizures. To date, 256 patients have been implanted with the RNS System, some for over eight years.

3. Computer-Assisted Sedation – No Anesthesiologist Required

Computer-Assisted Sedation Station

Many routine procedures like colonoscopies and endoscopies are performed with the assistance of anesthesia. SEDASYS ® Computer-Assisted Personalized Sedation Station System is a new device approved by the FDA in May 2013. It allows non-anesthesia professionals to administer Propofol, an anesthetic, through an IV during procedures like these. To utilize the device, the professional must have training and use the station only where an anesthesia specialist can be reached if needed.

This new sedation station could mean a lot for routine medical procedures like colonoscopies. It can distribute accurate amounts of anesthesia, provide bedside and procedure monitoring and reduce the high costs of needing anesthesiologists. The device is expected to enter the market early this year.

Have you heard of more innovative medical devices coming to life in 2014? Share them with us!

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