Quality of life and the integration of emergent technologies
Author: Mason, Ronald
Source: Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, Volume 22, Number 1, March 1997 , pp. 17-28(12)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:The means by which medical engineering can contribute to improving the quality of life are assessed with particular emphasis on developments in information and systems technology and materials science, technology, and engineering. Bioactive second generation implant materials capable of promoting bone and tissue regrowth, which represent a successful response to some of the disadvantages connected with present replacement surgery, are already becoming established. The next generation will depend increasingly on technologies utilising selforganised growth or guided selfassembly to produce analogues of biological materials or to engender in vivo regeneration. Improvement in areas such as image analysis and the processing of signals from large numbers of monitoring and sensor devices will increase the efficiency with which expensive equipment is used. Although innovation in materials may be expected, it is developments in existing materials processing that will establish the promise of current technologies. Engineering of materials into subsystems or systems is the engineering of adaptation: the emphasis is on systems integration.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Chairman, UCL Hospitals Trust, London, UK and immediate Past President of The Institute of Materials
Publication date: March 1997