What Is Biomedical Engineering?

Biomedical engineering is the use of engineering principles for biological or medical research. Most jobs in biomedical engineering require a master's degree or a doctorate, but some entry-level positions are available to candidates with a bachelor's degree. This article provides a brief description of this field. Schools offering Biomedical Engineering Technology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Field Overview

The field of biomedical engineering includes a number of specializations. Some of the most common specialties within biomedical engineering are tissue and genetic engineering, the development of medical diagnostic and treatment devices, and the creation of prosthetics.

Tissue and Genetic Engineering

Tissue engineering, which is the creation of artificial organs, is a main component of biomedical engineering. Biomedical engineers use a combination of mechanical equipment and biological materials to grow replacement organs such as livers and gallbladders that can be transplanted into medical patients. Another aspect of biomedical engineering is genetic engineering, which involves manipulating molecular material to change genetic structure. Genetic engineering is often used in farming to alter crops to make them larger or more capable of withstanding unfavorable growing conditions.

Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Equipment Design

Biomedical engineers often apply their expertise to the research and development of new medical equipment used in testing for and treating a variety of diseases. Dialysis machines, blood sugar level monitors, pacemakers, and imaging equipment like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems are just a few of the items created and developed through biomedical engineering techniques.


Biomedical engineering concepts are essential for creating prosthetic limbs. Biomedical engineers make the replacement limbs as realistic and functional as possible. Some biomedical engineers design facial prosthetics that change the outward appearance of a person's head or face. Facial prosthetics are often used in movies and theatrical productions, but can also be useful to medical patients or accident victims.

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