By: 13 March 2017
Medical AMRC helps orthopaedic company launch new solution for sports injuries

Researchers from the Medical Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) in Sheffield have helped an innovative orthopaedic products company develop a new type of surgical screw that improves the process for surgeons and the lives of their patients.

The development is the brain child of world-leading surgeons and Innovate Orthopaedics (IO), who asked the Medical AMRC to evaluate two new designs it had developed for specialised orthopaedic screws. The screws are designed for specific surgical procedures, including ACL reconstruction.

Marcus Crossley of Medical AMRC said: “We worked with IO to combine different aspects of their two designs and create one universal design that reduced the force needed to insert the screw while maintaining fixation.

“The benefits of using the new screw don’t stop there, however. It helps the surgeon by engaging more rapidly with the ligament and bone when it is inserted and reduces the fatigue experienced by the surgeon and minimises damage to the replacement ligament.”

The Medical AMRC showed how the universal design could be used to produce a wide range of screw sizes and worked with AMRC partner Star Micronics to develop the complex and unique CNC programme that allowed prototype screws to be produced on a Star Micronics sliding head lathe.

Huddersfield-based IO’s founder, Alex Gutteridge, said: “Clinical tests have produced extremely positive results and we are already seeing demand rising among British and international surgeons, who see the benefit of using these innovative, new designs.

“The Medical AMRC didn’t only help us refine our designs and take them into production. It also helped us to create patentable technology, which can be further protected by design registration, and enabled us to quickly gain ISO 13485 medical devices quality approval and European CE marking.

“Our aim at IO is to create innovative medical devices that solve problems identified by the surgeons in order to achieve better results for their patients, without pushing up costs. The Medical AMRC has played a key part in helping us to achieve that aim with our first product.”