Designing a User-Friendly Tool for an Existing Device
The client approached IDT to design a more surgeon-friendly implant insertion instrument without any changes to the implant. The implant was considered the gold standard among surgeons, but the previous insertion instrument was poorly designed. This resulted in a loss of market share to inferior implants, only because those other implants had superior instrumentation.
Multiple engineering teams had failed to come up with a better instrument. The implant could not be changed in any way, since that would require retesting and a new submission for regulatory approval.
An initial budget was confirmed for IDT to present up to 10 conceptual design ideas. Upon reviewing these ideas, the client considered two ideas new and potentially feasible.
One of the ideas gained traction and initial prototyping showed a high likelihood of success.
Eventually the design was completed and multiple instruments were manufactured and introduced to surgeons. The new instrument regained previously lost plus additional market share, and the client engaged IDT for additional projects, such as new implant products and instrumentation.
Designing a Patentable Device in a Saturated Minefield of Patents
A client wanted a patentable polyaxial screw, but knew the area was already saturated with patents. From the start, the project required an open mind with no preconceived notions. Background reviews were also needed to gauge the market and the enforceability of existing patents.
IDT’s engineers created several design ideas. Patentability was reviewed prior to and during the design of the device. This gave the team the ability to modify the design in case they discovered other patents with elements of the initial design ideas.
A conceptual design was eventually deemed patentable. The design was ultimately finalized for manufacturability and strength. This created a larger breadth of solutions for the client to choose from and also strengthened any subsequent patent filings. (Patent Number 7,766,945 B2)
Designing a Single, Small Component with A Growing List of Design Goals Leading To The Design of a Complex System with Multiple Components
Is it possible to respond to a growing list of design goals during the design process? Yes!
When a new task is requested, IDT always evaluates the final goals. We understand projects typically evolve and expand beyond the original design goal. Our approach allows our engineers to be flexible and responsive to any changes to the design goals during the project.
In addition to the initial design request, IDT will also present design solutions to address other potentially relevant design goals.