Steerable Endoscope with Visual and Therapeutic Capabilities
Our customer came to us looking to develop a first generation endoscope with steerable visual access and therapy capabilities to the biliary system. The company faced several challenges trying to develop the product internally and soon realized that partnering with Freudenberg Medical for our novel concept design and design for manufacturability was a better alternative.
Freudenberg Medical team members spent numerous hours in clinical settings and gaining “Voice of the Customer” feedback to fully understand the user interface requirements for the device. Our design team knew that correctly integrating the user needs into the device would be critical to market acceptance.
From there, tools such as interaction matrices and interaction maps were used to understand the complex sequences of use for each aspect of the device as an individual system and, within the system, as a whole. This process helped the team identify efficiencies in the design and incorporate equivalent functionality with fewer components and steps in assembly and in use. Freudenberg’s design team then recreated a mock endosurgical suite for the purpose of ensuring that the designers could fully appreciate the end user experience. This perspective allowed them to effectively deal with line-of-sight, cord and peripheral management, tactile feedback and the relationships of the device within the whole system in an innovative and cost effective way. Cohesive interaction between Freudenberg’s industrial design, design engineering, process engineering, and quality engineering team members ensured quick, efficient development cycles and allowed the team to meet the customer requirements and deadlines.
The product line that Freudenberg Medical developed is currently thriving in the marketplace. From the first fully functional prototype tested by key opinion leaders in a clinical setting, the user was able to gain visual access to very challenging areas of the biliary system and deliver precise therapies for the first time.