AMS Spring 2023

LimaCorporate and HSS Open First Hospital-Based Facility for 3D Printed Implants


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In 2019, global orthopedics manufacturing company LimaCorporate S.p.A. and the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS), the top-ranked orthopedic hospital in the United States, announced that they were partnering to establish the first 3D printing facility for complex custom implants in a hospital setting. HSS actually started using Lima’s patented 3D printed Trabecular Titanium implants for custom patient-specific solutions back in 2016, so the two already had a good working relationship when they decided to set up the facility.

Now, LimaCorporate and HSS have announced that their provider-based 3D design and printing facility for complex joint reconstruction surgery is officially open.

At the time of the original announcement, LimaCorporate CEO Luigi Ferrari said, “We are proud to be the first company to bring 3D printing of implants directly to a hospital organization, where the collaboration between top ranked surgeons and engineers can drive innovation and easier access to patients in the US.”

Italy-headquartered LimaCorporate will be the registered manufacturer for all 3D printed devices produced at the new FDA-regulated commercial facility, which is called the Promade PoC (Point of Care) Center and located in NYC at the HSS main campus.

“The Promade PoC Center opening marks the next stage of realizing our ultimate goal: to restore the emotion of motion, by empowering surgeons to improve patient outcomes from joint replacement surgery. We are no stranger to challenging the status quo and, through this world-leading partnership, will continue to innovate our industry-leading solutions to answer real patient needs,” Ferrari said in recent press release. “We look forward to sharing our expertise with HSS and furthering our commitment to advancing patient-centric care.”

The HSS is an affiliate of Weill Cornell Medical College and was one of the first hospitals to recognize how beneficial specialized, integrated biomechanical engineering and manufacturing could be for musculoskeletal health. The global standard total knee replacement procedure was developed at HSS in 1969, with the hospital’s engineering team forming less than a decade later, and daily collaboration between engineers and surgeons at HSS has resulted in improved orthopedic implants and techniques for creating them.

“This groundbreaking partnership reflects our sense of responsibility to innovate better possibilities, not only for our patients but also for other providers. Nearly half a century ago HSS specialists developed the modern total knee replacement, transforming the lives of millions of patients. Today, alongside LimaCorporate, we hope to further accelerate complex musculoskeletal solutions by expanding our ecosystem and providing surgeons with best-in-class patient care technology, onsite,” stated the HSS President and CEO Louis A. Shapiro.

LimaCorporate has more than 14 years of clinical experience, and is focused on the use of digital innovation and tailored hardware to advance patient-centered care. The company realized early on the vast potential of using titanium 3D printing to create custom implants that would improve the quality of life for patients by giving them back the gift of movement. By working with a leading academic medical center like the HSS, which specializes in musculoskeletal health, to implement this new provider-based 3D printing facility, LimaCorporate believes that personalized orthopedic solutions should continue to improve.

“While the majority of joint replacement patients have a similar treatment pattern, these custom 3D printed solutions will provide relief to complex patients, who have often been living with joint problems for decades, and expedite what was once an international production process. With this new level of access to LimaCorporate’s custom 3D printing, we also hope to foster and accelerate innovation in complex orthopedic joint care, with the potential to result in new products and solutions for patients across the U.S.,” said Leonard Achan, RN, MA, ANP, the President of the HSS Innovation Institute.

The types of patient-specific custom orthopedic solutions that will be 3D printed at the Promade PoC Center will generally be used for more complicated conditions and procedures. Pre-op HSS patients will be scanned onsite, and their implant will be digitally designed and printed ahead of surgery to better match the specific patient’s anatomy. This is truly an example of bringing personalized solutions directly to the point of care, so that patients will have quicker access to what they need.

The new facility will ensure that HSS surgeons and biomechanical engineers and LimaCorporate’s ProMade engineers can easily work together to make sure that patients receive a high level of care and quality 3D printed implants made just for them. This integration between the two should be able to reduce HSS patients’ time to surgery by weeks, and the new design and 3D printing service will also be available to patients from other hospitals in the US.

During the “End-User Hospitals and Clinical Experiences” discussion at our virtual AMS 2021 summit, the panelists discussed how conservative the field of medicine is, and that one of the best ways to get 3D printing implemented in hospitals is having a strong advocate for the technology. As the first provider-based 3D design and printing facility for complex 3D printed implants, the newly opened Promade PoC Center is definitely showing its faith, and hopefully other hospitals and organizations will follow suit so 3D printing can continue to live up to its potential.

(Source: Hospital for Special Surgery)

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