Our Customer is a medical device start-up company, looking to achieve a non-surgical approach to medical device implantation of stimulating electrodes. The challenges faced were designing a delivery system to deploy a stimulating electrode while minimising tissue damage.
Encouraging a blue-sky approach, the customer engaged in a brainstorming process with the ICS Medical Devices design team from the earliest stages. After generating over 25 ideas to meet the requirements, a scoring matrix was used to quantitatively identify the most promising designs. The three top scoring concepts were taken through to prototype development, where benchtop testing was carried out to help identify the most successful implantation approach.
A Bespoke Solution
The ICS Medical Devices development team simulated anatomical conditions using various grades of medical gelatin. By melting the interface between gelatin layers, the various stages of implantation could be realistically demonstrated in fatty tissue and deeper into muscular tissue. Using transparent gelatin had the additional benefit of clear process visualisation at this early prototyping stage; a useful tool for understanding the behaviour of the system without the need for ultrasonic equipment.
The capabilities of the first iteration of prototypes were demonstrated to the customer during a site visit, and the learnings reported by the ICS team helped the customer to distil the options to a single design to refine for the next phase of the project.
Screening & Selection
Based on the feedback and learnings from these prototypes, a second iteration of prototypes were developed and provided within six weeks. The brainstorm and prototype development process allowed the customer to evaluate different concepts to successfully deliver the implant in a benchtop model. Some of the prototypes demonstrated less invasiveness than others during implantation, thus meeting our customer requirements. The next stage for this customer is to progress selected concepts further, eventually with the objective of progressing to pilot manufacturing with ICS Medical Devices.
“Absolutely fantastic work Chiara, thank you for pulling it together so quickly and presenting it in such an accessible manner. It really is an impressive way to wrap up your 6 weeks of hard work, well done!”
To learn more about our unique brainstorming process and how it can apply to your business and idea click here