A Bright Future: Medical Innovations 2020

A Bright Future: Medical Innovations 2020


  • Hundred researchers and clinicians at the Cleveland Clinic, Ohio reviewed more than 150 medical innovations to rate the best ones for 2020
  • These latest innovations will have a significant clinical impact on patient care
  • These innovations will certainly transform the current scenario and enhance the medical field globally.

The medical field has seen a rigorous research by scientists, doctors, medical experts, medical researchers and scholars as this field evolved globally over the years. These experts have always aimed at the wellbeing of the entire human race. That is the only reason, medical inventions happened in the first place. It was through a consistent trial and error in experimenting on various medical aspects, many life transforming inventions took place. The foundation for a better quality of human life has been laid though these inventions. Today, we have an ample scope for innovations in the medical field, as clinicians and Pharmaceutical companies are working positively towards improving patient care globally.

The top innovations in the medical field were selected by around hundred researchers and clinicians who left no stone unturned in terms of reviewing almost 150 innovations in the medical field at the world’s most respected medical center Cleveland Clinic situated in Cleveland Ohio. It runs through a nonprofit corporation in Ohio called the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. These innovations will bring about a necessary change in the medical perception all over the world which are listed below.

Closed-loop spinal cord stimulation

Medical researchers have created a new concept of closed-loop spinal cord stimulation, which receives a certain feedback from the patient’s spinal cord. This system works by using a stimulator that can communicate in real time with the nerves in the spinal cord and accordingly adjust the dose of stimulation. It is a one of a kind system that can measure the response of the spinal cord to stimulation and regulate each pulse as per the activity of the affected individual. Patients are now able to sleep better as they are relieved form the pain, also taking comparatively lesser dose of medicines. This innovation could be a boon for patients suffering from chronic illnesses.

As the conventional method of cord stimulation sends impulses of electric nature using an implanted simulator for the chord where every patient is given a fixed dosage stimulation irrespective of his/her body movement.

Immunotherapy for allergy due to peanuts

A capsule with a very minimal quantity of peanut protein that is of a pharmaceutical grade has been suggested by a panel of experts, of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a treatment for peanut allergy. As and when the affected individual builds a tolerance, especially children the dose is gradually over a certain time span. Allergy due to peanuts can be quite a serious issue for children as well as their parents. In a clinical trial in its third phase for peanut allergy, almost 77% children were consuming 300 mg dosage daily which is equal to one peanut. This capsule is certainly a breakthrough as parents can at least breathe a sigh of relief in case their children are suffering from such an allergy.

Treatment for transthyretin amyloid cardiomyopathy

It is a deadly disease which can cause heart failure. The amyloid fibrils, made up of protein that is the transthyretin get deposited in the heart walls of the left ventricle making it rigid eventually causing heart failure. According to the Cleveland clinicians review and the approval by the FDA, tamafids, a compound that holds the protein intact and does not let it misfold has been analyzed as an unique medication for this cause. Patients taking tamafids had a comparatively lower rate of cardiovascular and 30% less all cause moratlity.

Expanded use of minimally invasive mitral valve surgery

Minimally invasive surgery was introduced much earlier for the repair of the mitral valve. The procedure consists of a new device called the transcatheter that was approved by the FDA to repair the valve in case the individuals have a condition of primary mitral regurgitation who don’t have the option of an open heart surgery.

But, in March, the FDA enlarged the scope of approval for the use of transcatheter where in patients with MR could also opt for the surgery, as a result of the left ventricle that is enlarged known as the secondary MR. According to the Cleveland Clinic, this is an innovation that will certainly be of assurance for the patients with a similar heart condition.

Dual-acting osteoporosis drug

Romosozumab is a drug which has a dual effect as it increases bone formation and reduces resorption of bones. According to clinical trial which was reported in the medicine journal of New England, women with osteoporosis who were given romosozumab had 50% less chances of getting any fractures in their spines and 38% less chances of hip fracture in comparison to those patients who took standard therapy for anti-resorption. Due to this drug, patients are getting better as their bones get strong gradually, which also makes them optimistic psychologically.

Diabetes drugs for heart failure with preserved ejection fraction

There is no such treatment available for heart failure as of now. Especially heart failure with the condition of preserved ejection fraction. However, sodium glucose co-transporter 2 inhibitors which are used to reduce the level of blood glucose for treating type 2 diabetes are now being tested for preserved ejection fraction.

The use of SGLT2 inhibitors for preserved ejection fraction were under focus when researchers analyzed that these inhibitors lowered the risk of heart failure and cardiovascular death of patients suffering from type 2 diabetes. Patients who had reduced ejection fraction and heart failure but were not suffering from diabetes and were treated with SGLT2 inhibitors showed similar outcomes. This heart failure subtype has pushed the researchers to work on new options for treatment.

PARP inhibitors for ovarian cancer maintenance therapy

Poly-ADP ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitors which are a significant and vital development for the treatment of ovarian cancer, have enhanced survival that is progression free in patients PARP has now got a positive signal from the FDA for maintaining the first-line therapy if the disease is in an advanced stage.

Maintenance therapy has not been explored in detail as of now in terms of ovarian cancer. But according to a study last year, which showed a lower risk of progression of disease by almost 70% or death in a period of three years in participants who used PARP inhibitor for the purpose of maintenance therapy. Many additional trials on a bigger scale are going on with PARP inhibitors leading to path breaking results in cancer therapy.

Bempedoic acid for patients who cannot consume statins

Bempedoic acid is a new agent which presents an alternate solution to reducing LDL cholesterol as it does not have the side effects of statins due to which a side effect of muscle pain can be seen in 5 to 10% patients who consume them.  Bempedoic acid unlike statins blocks a key enzyme which the body uses to make cholesterol. Bempeodoic does not accumulate in muscle reducing the possibility of muscle pain.LDL levels of patients drop by approximately 21% during clinical trials. Bempedoic acid could be one of the treatments for reducing cholesterol levels in patients.

Antibiotic envelope for preventing infection with cardiac implants

Devices such as defibrillators and pacemakers might have a risk of infection as they are cardiac devices used for implant purpose. But the new mesh sleeve or envelope integrated with antibiotics which covers these devices enables the gradual delivery of two antibiotics, minocycline and rifampin for a week after the implant due to which the infection risk is reduced. FDA gave the clearance to this envelope but the approval of Worldwide Randomized Antibiotic Envelope Infection Prevention (WRAP-IT) is still awaited. This is certainly an innovation which will relieve the patients who have cardiac issues.

Biologics in orthopedic repair

Patients who have suffered from rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) have a 20% possibility of rupturing it again. Researchers today, are looking for better results in the long term which will use the patient’s own body cells, growth factors, blood components and other substances of a natural origin to enhance the healing process at a faster pace thereby reducing the orthopedic injury inflammation. Bridge-enhanced ACL repair (BEAR), which is a new method comprises of a sponge injected with factors of a biologic nature combining the patient’s own blood. This acts in preservation of the existing tissue without cutting it, such other ways of biologics use include use of anti-infective coating for implant devices and rotator cuff injuries. Orthopedic repair and biologics will ensure a patient’s recovery at a much faster pace.



According to Michael Roizen, MD, Emeritus Chief Wellness Officer at Cleveland Clinic, who headed the panel of 100 clinicians “Healthcare is ever changing and we anticipate that these innovations will significantly transform the medical field and improve care for patients at Cleveland Clinic and throughout the world,” These medical innovations are a result of rigo efforts by medical experts across the various branches of the medical field. As the integration of technology in surgeries, curing diseases and such other causes of medical relevance is increasing, the future for medical innovations may be the precision factor in treatment of illnesses. As there is constant experimentation going on in this field, the results come out purely on the basis of trial and error but in an environment which comprises of the very basic rous medical amenities to the most technologically advanced labs, these may be pharmaceutical companies or international hospitals and such other medical facilities all over the world.