Medical equipment comprises various kinds of tools, gadgets, inserts, materials, prosthetics, instruments or appliances that are used in diagnosing, preventing or treating disorders and other medical conditions. Medical equipment does not achieve its purpose the way a drug works within or on the body, but rather acts through other ways such as mechanized, thermic or physical manners.
Devices or equipment used in the medical field differ greatly in complexity and relevance. Simple instances such as thermometers, disposable gloves or tongue depressors act as basic medical equipment whereas sophisticated technological tools such as computing devices, pathological apparatus, implants and other innovative instruments work as advanced medical equipment.
There are various kinds of medical equipment. These include:
• Equipment used in the diagnosis of medical conditions, such as medical imaging devices, CAT scan equipment, MRI scanners, ultrasound and PET machines etc. that are chiefly involved in understanding an individual’s body functionalities. Equipment such as ventilators, dialysis machines, heart-lung mechanisms etc. is involved in maintaining the state of a patient’s well-being.
• Instruments used to assess or measure a patient's medical state include medical monitors such as BP instruments, ECG and EEG machines that help in measuring an individual's vital signs and other parameters.
• Equipment used in analysing and automating specific kinds of bodily fluids such as blood, urine etc. are known as medical laboratory equipment.
• Specific machines or tools used to control certain disorders, for example type II diabetes, are known as diagnostic medical equipment.
There is great emphasis on the cleanliness and hygiene of medical devices, especially since the year 2000. In addition, the FDA is in the process of setting down new guidelines for the reproduction of reusable medical equipment such as endoscopic devices, suction tubes and orthoscopic shavers.