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Biomedical engineers work behind the scenes in hospitals to treat patients. This profession requires a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering. Some companies require a master’s degree for biomedical engineers in high-ranking positions. An experienced biomedical engineer earns about $48,500 a year. Among the job responsibilities and duties, this profession requires teamwork, speaking skills and technical writing ability.
Biomedical engineers are responsible for developing medical instruments. Special medical devices are needed for various uses in hospitals, such as eye lasers, heart-lung machines, radio transmitters and MRI machines. It takes trained and skilled professionals to create these complex machines. A doctor performing eye surgery needs a special laser delicate enough to avoid burning the eye. The biomedical engineer creates this laser for use in the hospital. Heart pacemakers are complex instruments developed by biomedical engineers. Biomedical engineers, for medical use, also develop artificial limbs and kidney machines.
Biomedical engineers are also researchers. They work along with doctors and scientists to research answers to medical questions. The medical field is full of questions that trained professionals seek answers to. Biomedical engineers perform tests to find answers to some of these questions. For example, they may perform tests on drugs to see the results on muscles in the body. They also study brain functions and memory loss in patients. Biomedical engineers may research thinking patterns and how certain drugs affect a person’s ability to concentrate or think rationally; doctors use this information to prescribe drugs to treat mental diseases or depression. Biomedical engineers perform research on new products like artificial organs; the products are tested for safety and proper function.
Biomedical engineers take their research findings and develop models to help others understand human or animal behavior. Models may be three-dimensional or computer simulations. Complex medical systems like the brain require visual aids and models to explain their function. Biomedical engineers design models to help doctors and scientists understand complex parts of the human body. This profession requires skill in computer technology to create programs or visual aids that may save the life of a patient.
Althea Thompson began writing professionally in 2002, and her work has appeared on CBN News and in the award-winning "Focus Magazine." She holds a Master of Arts in journalism from Regent University and a Bachelor of Arts in communication and writing from Houghton College.