Medical textiles is a wide class under technical textiles, which includes wound dressings, bandages, and hospital linen (external and theater linen). Biomedical textiles include those implantable on a patient such as arterial grafts, artificial skin and other organs, sutures and ligatures, and artificial repair fabrics. Hence, biomedical textiles can be defined as materials comprising of fibers that are specially designed for use in specific biological conditions, wherein biocompatibility and bio-stability with cells and biological environment are the factors determining the performance of biomedical textiles.
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Every day the society is changing in the form of increasing population size and desire to have a longer life span. Factors such as unavoidable situations and hazards occurring in the civilization that lands an individual in a hospital and subsequent care required are the reasons for demand for biomedical textiles.
Tissue engineering is an upcoming technology, wherein researchers are trying to develop textiles that allow the body to form new tissue around them. This would enable the body to not solely depend on synthetic material implanted in the body. Medical textiles is a speedily expanding segment of the technical textiles market and is expected to witness high growth in the near future.
For the last five decades, biomedical textiles and fiber-based implants are being used routinely to help in healing. There exist a number of biomaterials that can be used as medical textiles such as cotton, silk, fiber yarns, collagen, synthetic fibers (PTFE, carbon, polyethylene, polyester, polypropylene, polyamide, and polyurethane), viscose, and alginate. Some of these are bio-degradable, for instance, collagen, viscose, and cotton. The others are non-biodegradable, for example, PTFE fiber, carbon fiber, and polyester fiber.
The controllable degradability, biocompatibility, ease of processing, and significant mechanical strength are the factors considered for any biomaterial to be used for soft tissue repair, extracorporeal implants, health care and hygiene products, and other related purposes.
Based on applications, the biomedical textiles market can be divided into ophthalmology, neurology, cardiovascular, general surgery, dental, orthopedics, all-purpose, and others.
The biomedical textiles market in North America and Europe is mature, due to established health care facilities and availability of sophisticated products in these regions. The market, being mature, provides limited opportunities in terms of untapped potential in the biomedical textiles market. Asia Pacific is expected to be a highly attractive market. Increase in the number of health care facilities in Asia Pacific is expected to boost the biomedical textiles market in the region, as the region accounts for more than 50% of the global population and emerging economies. The biomedical textiles market in Middle East & Africa is likely to expand at a speedy rate.
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Key players operating in the biomedical textiles market include Secant Medical, Tactile Medical, SWICOFIL, Confluent Medical Technologies, ATEX TECHNOLOGIES, US BioDesign, Bally Ribbon Mills, Meister & Cie AG, and DSM.
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