Review of current actuator suitability for use in medical implants.

Spencer Szczesny, Stefanie Jetzki, Steffen Leonhardt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents an initial formal review of the suitability of currently available actuation technologies for use in fully implantable medical devices, with a focus on applications requiring linear motion. Examples of such applications are a mechatronic hydrocephalus shunt and implantable insulin pumps. Some general basic requirements for fully implantable devices are discussed, followed by an overview of potential actuators. Possible design concepts are presented for electromagnetic and shape memory technologies, including a comparison of their respective pros and cons. Methods of modeling and analysis are given to aid early decision-making processes for general design applications. Finally, other more complicated but attractive actuation possibilities are discussed.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Signal Processing
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Health Informatics


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