Medical MEMS – An innovative approach to medical care
Micro-electro mechanical systems (MEMS) is an innovative technology used to make miniaturized mechanical and electro-mechanical elements that are employed in medical devices through microfabrication techniques. Basic elements of MEMS comprise miniaturized structures, actuators, sensors, and microelectronics. The MEMS technology uses concepts of biology and microelectronics to improve patient monitoring. MEMS technology helps in fast and accurate diagnosis of diseases due to microchip technology. Rampant research and development in the MEMS technology has led to the development of innovative products by medical technology companies. For instance, in June 2017, Omron Electronic Components BV, upgraded its MEMS thermal sensing technology. With this technology, it introduced new Omron D6T-1A-02, a super sensitive infra-red temperature sensor. Furthermore, increasing demand for portable and miniaturized devices by healthcare professionals has influenced medical device companies to embed MEMS sensors in medical devices. MEMS technology is integrated in medical devices used in home-care settings, thus increasing preference for these devices among patients.
Furthermore, the amalgamation of nanotechnology with MEMS has led to the development of numerous applications such as biochips, polymerase chain reaction, electroporation, ELISA, electrophoresis, micro-machined scanning tunneling microscopes, and micro systems for drug screening and selection.
Growth of the global medical MEMS market is primarily driven by rising demand for artificial limbs and shift in focus towards portable medical devices for home-care. Ageing population and increasing research and development activities towards advancement of the MEMS technology is majorly contributing to growth of the global medical MEMS market. High efficacy, low costs of this technology, and rising awareness of MEMS technology-based products among patients are also fueling growth of the market. The global medical MEMS market was valued at US$ 3,054 million in 2016 and is expected to witness a robust CAGR of 18.2% over the forecast period (2017-2025).
Global Medical MEMS Market Share by Region, 2016
Source: Coherent Market Insights 2017
Asia Pacific to fuel the medical MEMS market during the forecast period
North America accounts for the largest share in the global medical MEMS market, followed by Europe. This is mainly attributed to the presence of skilled surgeons in North America and wide availability of MEMS technology-based products in the region. The medical MEMS market in Asia-Pacific is expected to exhibit a high growth rate over the forecast period, supported by the growing number of patient in the region. This results in increased expenditure on healthcare, in turn supporting growth of the medical MEMS market in this region. Japan is the most developed medical MEMS market for medical MEMS in Asia Pacific.
Furthermore, increasing geriatric population is expected to favor growth of the medical MEMS market, as this population is more prone to high risk injuries due to their weak skeletal system. The most prevalent musculoskeletal disease affecting aging population is osteoarthritis, causing rise in demand for joint replacement surgeries. Development of artificial limbs with integrated circuits coupled with R&D initiatives to advance MEMS technology is expected to boost growth of the medical MEMS market. According to data from World Population Prospects, 962 million people were recorded to be 65 years of age or above, accounting for 13% of the global population, which is expected to double in number, reaching 2.1 billion by 2050 and 3.1 billion by 2100.
Wide-scale application of MEMS technology in the healthcare sector is expected to favor market growth
Diagnostic and therapeutic devices are the major application areas of medical MEMS technology, which are expected to favor significant growth of the market in the foreseeable future. The Bigfoot medical’s Asante Insulin Pump and Dexcom CGM Systems use MEMS technology. Rapid adoption of medical MEMS technology in hospitals and growing preference for minimally invasive therapeutic approach are expected to fuel growth of the market. For instance, in July, 2017, Abbott Laboratories and Bigfoot Biomedical entered into an agreement to develop and market glucose sensing technology in the U.S.
Major players in the global MEMS market include Honeywell Sensing and Control, Abbott Laboratories, Flexpoint Sensor Systems, Analog Device Inc., GE measurement and control solutions, Omron Corporation, Integrated Sensing Systems, MemsTech Bhd., and Agilent Technologies.