Medical devices are any instrument, apparatus or machine that can be used to diagnose or treat an illness within a patient. These instruments are greatly diverse in their nature. Some medical devices can be operated by normal humans to check and treat basic infections while others need a doctor or a skilled professional to operate them. For e.g.; a blood pressure machine or a blood sugar detector can be operated by almost any humans with some basic training while a medical device such as an MRI or an X-RAY machine must operate by a doctor or a radiologist who has the proper set of skills.
While purchasing a basic medical device for household use one must ensure that it has passed the government’s licensing examination for that country before purchasing said product. This is a crucial point to consider while purchasing any medical device as there are a lot of fake products in the market and using them would most likely produce adverse effects in your body and bring in more infection rather than curing an ailment.
While classifying medical devices they can also be divided into two further subclasses.
- Low risk medical devices- They include instruments such as tongue swabs, gloves, thermometers, etc. They are generally cheap to manufacture and they can be easily disposed of safely.
- High risk medical device- They include instruments such as a pacemaker or knee prosthesis. They are expensive to manufacture, difficult to implant and much harder to dispose of safely.
One more criteria that one must consider while designing a medical device is its biocompatibility with the body. The inventor must ensure that the device does not trigger the body’s immune response that leads to the rejection of the device nor create any adverse effects in the body.