October 09, 2017

Getting innovations in biomedical optical imaging to market faster

Getting innovations in biomedical optical imaging to market faster

Biomedical industry headlines have the makings of a sci-fi novel, touting robotic suits for stroke patients, electronic patches for infants in clinical trials, research to grow brain cells on a chip, typing-by-brain technologies, and e-mosquitos that “drink” diabetes patients’ blood to test glucose levels. New biomedical optical imaging technologies are being introduced at remarkable speed. Getting to market faster is critical, not only to gain market share over competitors, but also to pioneer systems and devices to advance biomedical capabilities and save lives.

Advancements in biomedical optical imaging

Biomedical optical imaging is one of the most relied-upon methods in healthcare for diagnosing and treating diseases. Advances in the industry have enabled non-invasive, advanced detection of many conditions and diseases. Optical technologies are a critical part of modern medical treatment.

The goal of biomedical optical imaging is to identify abnormalities in the human body while causing minimal damage to healthy tissue. Applications include microscopes, endoscopes, scanning systems (CT, MRI), spectrometers, biosensors, medical sample illumination, fluorescence imaging, fiber optic sensors, laser eye surgery, and laser hair removal.

Product advances are being driven by patient need. For example, according to the Global Flexible Endoscopes Market 2017-2021 Report, "The growing incidence of disorders such as colorectal, esophageal, or pancreatic cancers, biliary disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and GERD is expected to propel the market growth."

Developing biomedical optical imaging technologies in record time

To turn an optical design into reality, successful product development relies on close collaboration between optical and mechanical engineers. One of the biggest challenges to collaborating efficiently is they often use different tools and work in separate software environments. This can be frustrating, time consuming, and expensive—something biomedical companies cannot afford.

Modern virtual prototyping is being used today by leading companies in the biomedical industry. The results have been remarkable, with fewer failures and faster time to market.

For example, Global Surgical, an industry leader in dental microscopy, has maintained its advantage in this competitive market in part by streamlining workflows. By using Zemax Virtual Prototyping, Global Surgical produced a successful physical prototype several months ahead of schedule.

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