A recent study highlights how bioimpedance is increasingly used in both medical and health care related research. The technology is still mostly known to people by the body fat measuring bathroom scales. However, it is widely used in life-critical medical applications for monitoring renal and lung function and different in vivo diagnostics and treatment procedures.

Dalia El Khaled et al. from the University of Almeria in Spain recently published an article* that analyses the trends in bioimpedance related research. Their study is based on the Scopus Database, the largest database of peer-reviewed literature including journals, books, and conference proceedings. Analysing academic research is important because it reflects what R&D intensive companies are working on. Therefore, it predicts market interest. So, let’s look at some of the interesting conclusions this study reveals about bioimpedance.

Bioimpedance research has more than tripled in 10 years

A real breakthrough came when the first commercial bioelectric impedance analysers reached the market in the mid-eighties. Since then, the number of bioimpedance related publications has been growing. Further advancements in technology in the 2000’s caused an even steeper rise in the annual publication numbers. If this trend continues, we can soon expect 400+ publications each year. This, in turn, means that the technology is maturing and the number of application areas is growing. For example, in 2017 bioimpedance analysis was used to measure bone thickness in real-time during craniotomy to reduce soft-tissue damage underneath the skull.

Bioimpedance ublication trends

The U.S. is leading the way in bioimpedance research

The geographical distribution of publications shows that bioimpedance is more researched in bigger and technically advanced countries. The list is led by the U.S. with 850 publications. The following United Kingdom and Spain are left far behind with 336 and 326 publications respectively. Germany and Italy complete the top 5.

The article also highlights the most prolific institutions when it comes to bioimpedance research. It’s great to see that Eliko’s partner, the Tallinn University of Technology ranks third in the top 10 list. Our Quadra Impedance Spectroscopy device was developed in co-operation with Prof. Mart Min’s group from the Tallinn University of Technology, combining more than 40 years of experience in electrical impedance research. You can visit our publications page to see the list of bioimpedance related articles that we have jointly published.

Top 10 Bioimpedance institutions

Bioimpedance is improving the quality of health care

The word bioimpedance refers to the impedance of living objects, therefore it is no surprise that about 70% of all publications are related to medicine. Classic bioimpedance devices like the body composition analysers have been on the market for a while now. However, in recent years many new applications are finding their way to the medical practice. It’s fair to say that the quality of health care is rising partly due to innovative bioimpedance applications like the smart-needle.

The second most popular publication category is engineering. This indicates that not only is bioimpedance used in different medical applications, but researchers are designing novel medical devices based on bioimpedance measurements.

Bioimpedance publications by research field

This article covers several other aspects including top 10 list of journals for bioimpedance, rankings of the journals and statistics on top keywords. For a better overview, make sure to read the full article, it is available for free. Please note that all images in this article have been reproduced from the original article.

Contact me if you have questions relating to bioimpedance in general, or whether it can be used in a particular medical application.

* El Khaled, D.; Novas, N.; Gazquez, J.-A.; Manzano-Agugliaro, F. Dielectric and Bioimpedance Research Studies: A Scientometric Approach Using the Scopus Database. Publications 2018, 6, 6.

 

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