With the AI revolution taking center stage, many are discussing what could be possible in the next twenty-five years of medical innovation.
But while this conversation is ongoing, it’s a good opportunity to look back and appreciate the medical innovations of the last twenty-five years – all of which have been achieved without even a whisper of AI!
Over the last quarter of a century, huge innovations in the medical field have made it easier to develop treatments, supply organ transplants, undergo surgery, and even replace human body parts.
In many ways, the last twenty-five years have been the most revolutionary so far in the healthcare industry, so let’s take a look at some of the best medical innovationss and how they have changed things:
1. 3D Printed Body Parts
The 3D printer has been one of the most interesting breakthroughs in the medical world. This is mainly because while the number of people needing transplants has doubled over the last ten years, the availability of organs has deteriorated.
With 3D printers, however, scientists have created organs and body parts that can be unified with living hosts. These include bionic eyes, hearts, skin, ears, and ovaries. There is still a long way to go, but the work already achieved has been incredibly innovative and paved the way toward a 3D-printed future.
2. Surgical Tools
Looking specifically at the role surgeons play during an operation, one of the most innovative developments might be the introduction of self-retaining medical retractors.
The Galaxy II, for instance, won the Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2021 due to its ability to reduce operating time and alleviate the need for assistants to retract. Anything that eases the load on surgeons and reduces costs in the medical field must be recognized and celebrated, not least when they solve age-old cost issues, patient safety, and recovery time.
3. Targeted Cancer Treatment
One of the most revolutionary developments for patients must be targeted therapy in cancer treatment. Before, the only treatment for cancer patients as chemotherapy and radiation therapy – two therapies that attack cancerous and healthy cells. Targeted therapy, however, can identify and eliminate the specific cancer cells while also blocking the spread of cancer cells involved in the tumor’s growth.
While there is still work to do in this area, researchers are now focusing all their energy on creating treatments that can be individualized depending on the molecular makeup of the tumor, demonstrating how important this breakthrough has been in the ongoing fight against cancer.
4. The Cyberknife
Returning to treating cancerous tumors, Cyberknife has been a similarly innovative development that has changed how patients are treated. Consisting of a lightweight linear accelerator on a robotic arm, the cyberknife uses X-rays to identify a lesion during treatment and then beams radiation directly at the treatment target.
This is a game-changer for patients who cannot have surgery through conventional methods, as the technology is minimally invasive, with no incisions and less chance of infection.
5. The Human Genome Draft
Lastly 2003, scientists completed the first draft to sequence the human genome. By doing this, researchers have been given a chance to identify particular genes that cause diseases, which subsequently helps them to create the necessary treatments.
There are many ways the human genome draft has changed the world, but when it comes to biomedical advancements, this was one of the most important in the fight to cure all diseases. Whether that fight will be won in our lifetime remains to be seen, but the human genome draft has certainly accelerated the possibility.
In conclusion, there have been remarkable advances in medicine over the past 25 years, which have significantly improved patient outcomes and healthcare. These medical inventions, which range from ground-breaking technology advancements to ground-breaking therapies, have altered how we prevent, identify, and cure diseases.