Beginner Looking For Path [Medical Devices]

Thread Starter

electrolearner

Joined Apr 9, 2020
2
Hello all,

I am relatively new to this forum and to the world of analog electronics

Background:
I am a electrical engineering undergrad who has taken a few courses on electromagnetism and electronics. I am familiar with some basic components (resistors, capacitors, inductors, and a tiny bit of semiconductors) and some principles (Ohm's Law, induction, Maxwell's Equations). However, I have never designed my own circuits. I have some experience with microcontrollers, but not much with analog components.

Interests:
My end goal is to design circuits for electronic medical devices (diagnosis, monitoring, wearables, EMG, EEG, etc...). I also have general interests in controls, signal processing, and embedded systems.

The Question:
The thing is, there is a lot of information out there, and I am easily overwhelmed and stuck in analysis paralysis. What path would you all recommend I take to get to designing medical stuff? Books? Particular circuits? Should I focus on first learning basic circuits and fundamental building blocks or should I dive in and learn as I go? I'd like to develop a sort of outline/roadmap of things I should learn and do.
 

MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
23,570
Medical stuff or not, the path is the same.

Continue taking the courses offered related to math, physics, computers, electronics, signal processing. Seek out courses offered on bio-medical physics, health and radiation physics.

What you now need is practical experience.
Get yourself some basic items:
DMM
Power supply (or even two 9V batteries)
Solderless prototyping board
jumper or hookup wire
Components: resistors, capacitors, diodes, transistors, LEDs, opamps, 555-timer, digital circuits.
(You can acquire most of what you need in an electronics starter kit.)

Start building stuff and experimenting.

Here is a list of parts for your interest for starters:
https://forum.allaboutcircuits.com/threads/components-selection-guide.65137/#post-531470
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
8,808
I AM an electrical/electronic engineer with a good amount of experience. About 16 years ago I tried to apply for a job servicing and calibrating medical electronics. I learned that for an entrance level position I had to have a Masters degree in medical electronics from one of a very short list of universities.
Unless things have changed, that is a very big leap for a very limited area of employment.
I suggest starting in a more accessible field to gain the skills and credentials.
 

tindel

Joined Sep 16, 2012
780
Sounds like you're doing the right things. You're a EE undergrad. Next step is to find an internship in the medical devices industry.

You likely won't design anything for a med device company for 5-10 years after graduation. If you want to design in the future, they'll bring you in as a test engineer so you learn what they are designing so that you can later design those things. It's rare to get a design job out of college - at least out of undergraduate school. More likely at a startup, but still likely to be a test engineer there, as well.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
8,808
Consider, and plan for, going on beyond the basic BSEE degree, in getting at least an MSEE in medical electronics. That will at least qualify you for an interview at one of the medical systems companies.
 

Thread Starter

electrolearner

Joined Apr 9, 2020
2
I appreciate the replies. I'll be aiming to get a MSEE for sure.

In the meanwhile, I will dive into analog circuits using the book Make: Electronics: Learning Through Discovery 2e by Charles Platt. It provides a bit of theory and quite a few "experiments" (circuits). I can then use resources to dive deep into the theory and use my knowledge to derive mathematical models for each of the circuits.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
8,808
In addition to all of those technical skills, the ability to communicate clearly and accurately is very valuable. If you can't adequately communicate your brilliant ideas it is very difficult to share them. In addition, clear and adequate communication tends to make the jobs go more smoothly.
 
Top