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Smallfry partners with Coronet Medical Technologies to bring new advanced trephine tool to market

22 June 2018

Midlands-based industrial design innovation company, Smallfry, recently partnered with Coronet Medical Technologies in the USA to develop a new trephine system designed specifically for penetrating keratoplasty surgery. Coronet currently lead the way in research and development for corneal graft surgery, and have worked with Smallfry on a number of key projects over the past few years with great success.

Smallfry has been helping companies in the medical industry to successfully take their products to market for over four decades. As well as aiding in the design of products, they have also earned a solid reputation for applying a combination of strategy, research and thought leadership to help businesses turn lightbulb moments into tangible commercial success stories.

A trephine is an extremely fine cutting tool usually used to cut a flap in the corneal epithelium during eye surgery. The new trephine system that has been developed by Smallfry and Coronet will be used in penetrating keratoplasty surgery, commonly known as corneal transplant surgery. This involves removing a circular piece of tissue from an injured or diseased cornea using a trephine.

There are a number of things that set this new trephine apart from existing ones, including a precise marker pin feature which enables visual tracking of blade progression. Where surgeons would previously have to rely on calibration and settings, they can now see the blade in real-time and make accurate judgement calls where needed.

Steve May-Russell, Managing Director at Smallfry, said:

“We’re delighted to have been involved in bringing this new trephine tool to market. It has the potential to drastically increase the efficiency and accuracy of corneal transplant surgery, saving practitioners valuable time while setting patients’ minds at ease. We’re looking forward to our next project with Coronet.”

Combined with ergonomic finger grips that work in harmony with the hand’s natural position, this will make procedures more comfortable and seamless for practitioners. The new trephine tool also comes with an enhanced crosshair for easier centralisation, and it’s one of the most lightweight tools of its kind making for easy manoeuvrability. A vacuum function also pulls away from the incision and holds the trephine securely in place with minimal impact on intraocular pressure (the fluid inside of the eye). This should make procedures more seamless and comfortable for patients.

Parts of the new trephine system have even been patented, such as the skirt that sits on the limbus and conforms to the topography and contours of the eye.

It isn’t the first time Smallfry and Coronet have teamed up to bring such an innovative product to market, and both parties are certain it won’t be the last.  Smallfry continues to challenge and assist businesses in the medical sector, helping to innovate products and make them ready for market. 2018 is shaping up to be another successful year it seems.