Category Archives: Health Care

More than Just a Pretty Smile: Dental Implants Improve Well Being

Ask a person their least favorite doctor and many will say ‘the dentist.’ It’s unfortunate that preventative dental checkups are often skipped or ignored altogether. Without proper care, teeth are prone to cavities, plaque, rot, and gum disease. Oral health has been shown to influence total body health and is extremely important.

Today’s dental technologies offer many new and exciting options for replacing teeth lost to disease, injury, or age. Medical devices designed exclusively for the dental industry are expected to increase as the market for dental implants and prosthetics grows. With the use of CAD/CAM technologies in dentistry, implants offer permanent solutions for replacing teeth.

The aging baby boomers are largely responsible for the increases in the dental implant and prosthetics market. Increased awareness of available options combined with rising disposable incomes are driving the development of new treatments in the dental industry. Traditional treatments include crowns, bridges, and dentures; newer implant technology is becoming more widely utilized.

With improvements in materials, manufacturing, and provider experience, dental implants are proving to be an excellent and more permanent choice among patients and practitioners. The benefits of implants over other types of restorations are many. To replace a missing tooth, an implant fills the space completely without modifications to the surrounding teeth. Implants consist of a titanium post implanted into the jawbone acting as the root of the new ‘tooth.’ A crown is attached to the post and the implant, once fully healed into the bone, should last a lifetime. According to the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the success rate of dental implants is extremely high (up to 98%).

A recent study by researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine studied the quality of life after treatment to replace missing teeth in women suffering from osteoporosis. Women who had received dental implants reported the highest level of satisfaction with their work and social lives. Dental implants offer many advantages over just appearance. They improve oral health, enable patients to continue to eat as they did before, do not cause speech impediments, and are comfortable in the mouth.

As a premier medical device manufacturer we know how important it is to produce quality implant materials that will provide a patient an excellent quality of life. In dentistry, the ability to replace teeth with seamless replacements hasn’t been possible in the past. With dental implants, all of that is changing and Hammill Medical stands at the forefront of expanding our quality implants.

Wearable Medical Devices Could Significantly Change Data Collection and Healthcare

Apple continues to revolutionize the way we do things. The music industry has undergone a complete change since the iPod was introduced and digital music became the norm. The iPhone was the catalyst for transforming the telecommunications industry and gave us instant access to information. The iPad brought tablet computers to the mainstream and changed how we read, play, and work.

As Apple’s newest technologically advanced product makes its way into the hands of consumers, what affects will the Apple iWatch have on the medical industry?

Apple iWatch Digital ImageThis first generation smartwatch is primarily a companion to the iPhone that allows the user to check messages, ask Siri questions, and run simplified apps. The watch can be used for Apple Pay, listening to music, telling time (of course), and fitness metrics.

It is in the area of fitness and health that the Apple iWatch has potential as a medical device. This first gen product has solid fitness software that will track physical activity, heart rate and monitor workouts. It will suggest personal fitness goals and offer help in reaching milestones. The wearables market is expanding rapidly and the Apple iWatch is just the beginning of quality health data compilation.

Smart technology is integrating into our lives at a rapid pace. The biometrics industry is innovating as the trends show that increasing the amount of data we collect will improve the treatment and prevention of disease. They do say knowledge is power – and the power to create new healthcare solutions begins with information.

Currently, there are millions of devices being utilized on patients every day that monitor Apple iWatch Analog Imageand collect biometric data. Adding specialized sensors to smartwatches could, in the future, be responsible for measuring things like blood flow, respiration, and oxygen saturation levels.

As developers continue to evolve uses for the smartwatch, we could see Apple and Google on the forefront of medical monitoring. More and more medical related apps are on the horizon and the products will evolve to allow patients to be more involved in their own healthcare. And, as patients are able to control this smart tech themselves, where will the medical diagnostics industry lead?

The medical industry has always been adapting and changing to take advantage of the newest technologies. Biometric data collection is another tool that will help expand innovative devices and improve our lives.

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However You Define It, At Hammill Medical We Are Committed To Safety In Manufacturing

There’s a lot of talk about safety and security in the media these days, and this topic of conversation is even more popular than usual this month: according to the National Safety Council (NSC), June is National Safety Month. The NSC website says, “National Safety Month focuses on reducing leading causes of injury and death at work, on the road and in our homes and communities.”

The NSC’s objective for National Safety Month encompasses a lot: covering workplace safety, safety at home, and safety in communities. How you define “safety” can be just as National Safety Month Logovaried, with a wide range of possible definitions. Safety is a general topic, and the description of “safety” is often determined by the circumstances or environment you are involved in or talking about; whether you’re talking about physical safety or other types of safety threats. Even when you get more specific and narrow down the topic of safety, as it affects business and industry, the definition can vary. From manufacturing operations practices and employee safety, to IT security and Internet security concerns, “safety” in manufacturing industries covers a lot of territory and includes an assortment of related topics.

However you define it, we are committed to safety at Hammill Medical. Our commitment to safety extends to everything we do, and to everyone affected by the medical implants and medical devices we manufacture. We follow the FDA’s mandated guidelines, which regulate manufacturing practices and operations for medical industry manufacturers, but our commitment to safety goes even further. We also stay on top of the latest manufacturing safety trends and safety-related news.

Currently, a trending safety-related news topic is the safety of manufacturing companies’ IT and communication networks – especially where operations are automated and controlled by computer-based networks. Think about all of the network “hacking” incidents we’ve been hearing about lately in the news… Now imagine how disruptive (and possibly destructive) it could be to a company’s manufacturing operations if their network was ever hacked! A report on ScienceDaily.com says, “Production facilities and components of Industry 4.0 are linked to the Internet, networked with each other, and thus open to attack.” The report goes on to explain how researchers in an IT laboratory are now offering a test environment in order to simulate attacks on computer networks to detect any safety gaps.

Conducting safety awareness campaigns and employee safety programs, following FDA guidelines for manufacturing practices, doing testing, and simulating manufacturing operations are just some of the ways manufacturing companies can exhibit their commitment to safety. We do whatever we can to keep everyone safe, and, like we said before; however you define it, we are committed to safety at Hammill Medical!

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Market for Surgical Instruments for Minimally Invasive Surgery

Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) is becoming increasing popular for all types of surgical procedures. The procedure involves making small incisions in the skin that are used to insert an endoscope and special surgical instruments instead of making a large incision. Recovery times are often quicker and patients experience less discomfort than they would after conventional surgery.

As the techniques and procedures improve, MIS is being found to be safe, effective, and preferred for many different types of surgeries. The expansion of these procedures results in advances in the instruments required to accurately perform these tasks. It is the global acceptance of MIS as a viable and preferred surgical option that greatly expands the market for the specialized surgical instruments required.

A new report [1] expects the minimally invasive surgical instruments market to increase at a CAGR of 6.1% over the next 5 years. In 2014, the market was $10,562.2 million and is expected to grow to $14,133.0 million by 2019.

Market segments for MIS surgical instruments are based on products, applications, and regions. The fastest growing type of surgical instrument products are expected to be for orthopedic and cosmetic/bariatric surgery. Aging populations suffering from osteoporosis, arthritis, and spine injuries are requiring more surgical intervention and rising awareness of obesity and health concerns are leading to a rise in weight loss surgeries.

Manufacturers in North America, such as Medtronic, are the most dominant in the industry today, followed by those in Europe. The fastest growing market is expected to be the Asia-Pacific region. Increased awareness of MIS procedures and a rising middle class are fueling the rise in these procedures in regions including China, Japan, and India.

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine conducted a study [2] and found that MIS is “grossly underutilized” and if hospitals in the U.S. increased use of MIS by 50%, over 3,500 post-op complications could be avoided and $288 million would be cut from health care costs.

Advancements and innovations in healthcare and surgical procedures will continue to grow the market for the tools required to fulfill the needs of the doctors and surgeons. Expanding product portfolios for surgical instruments will improve MIS developments and strategies.

References

[1] Minimally Invasive Surgical Instruments Market by Product, Application – Global Forecast to 2019, http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/7kbzbb/minimally

[2] Increasing use of minimally invasive surgery ‘would avert thousands of post-op complications’, http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/291405.php