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Smith & Nephew reveal plans to build digital surgery and robotics ecosystem

por John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | March 15, 2019
Operating Room
Smith & Nephew is developing products
and making investments that are
expected to create a multi-asset
digital surgery and robotics ecosystem
Smith & Nephew is in the midst of developing new products and making investments that set the stage for a multi-asset digital surgery and robotics ecosystem.

Among its endeavors is the launch of its handheld robotic surgical system, NAVIO 7.0; news about the upcoming release of its next generation surgical robotics platform; the opening of its R&D and medical education center for robotics; and its acquisition of Brainlab’s Orthopaedic Joint Reconstruction business.

With a new intuitive interface, NAVIO 7.0 offers surgeons expanded surgical preferences and a streamlined workflow that may reduce time for procedures more than with the past generation. It will include ANTHEM Total Knee System for emerging markets, a solution that has demonstrated non-inferiority of 10-year implant survivorship in patients undergoing total knee arthroplasty for osteoarthritis.

"Smith & Nephew’s NAVIO surgery eliminates the CT scan often associated with other image-based, robotics-assisted technology," a Smith & Nephew spokesperson told HCB News. "Instead, NAVIO uses real-time imaging in the OR, which eliminates time, costs and radiation exposure associated with preoperative CT imaging. CT-free technology will also feature on the new platform."

Though not yet FDA cleared, commercialization of the software is expected to begin in the second half of 2019 and will be followed by the completion of Smith & Nephew’s next generation robotics platform later on in the year.

Equipped with CT-free technology, the system can be used in all surgical settings, including ambulatory surgical centers, and can be incorporated into Smith & Nephew’s sports medicine tower due to its reduction of physical footprints. In addition, procedure time is less, compared to NAVIO 7.0, due to the platform’s advanced offerings in surgical workflow, data acquisition and connectivity, with plans by the company’s R&D program to incorporate augmented reality, stand-alone robotic arms and machine learning technologies.

Smith & Nephew also plans to expand the reach of its company with the opening of an R&D and medical education training facility for robotics in Pittsburgh, the headquarters of its robotics business. Tripling the space of its robotics business, the expansion opens up multiple job opportunities which the company is currently working to fill.

Another new addition is the Brainlab Orthopaedic Joint Reconstruction business, which serves more than 500 accounts worldwide. The acquisition includes Brainlab’s associated sales force, which will be integrated into Smith & Nephew’s robotics organization to help to create an upgrade path with more capabilities for customers of Brainlab and Smith & Nephew, as well as the installation of Brainlab’s hip software on NAVIO 7.0.

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