Enovis has produced and launched a wearable augmented reality (AR) device, ARVIS, to be used for orthopaedic surgeries but more specifically customised towards knee and hip replacements. ARVIS is an independent surgical guidance device that can be controlled by surgeons and attached to the wearer’s head to make sure it does not interfere with the operation. This product shows real-time AR visualisation and instructions to help surgeons place and align implants with precision. The launch comes at an opportune time as orthopaedic surgeries are on the rise due to the rebound of backlogged surgeries that were once postponed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Another factor for the growing demand is an ageing population: in the US alone, the population of those 65 or older is expected to reach 80 million by 2040, which will only accelerate the need for more efficient and easier-to-use means of orthopaedic procedures.
Several benefits of implementing AR into surgeries are primarily the safety advantages. Rather than estimating where specific locations need to be accessed in the body based on a variety of 2D images, surgeons can now use 3D models projected directly to their point of view, which provide more accurate locations. Furthermore, operations can now be wrapped up in a timelier manner as surgeons no longer need to divert their attention between different scans of their patients and continue the procedure with greater confidence. Lastly, AR has huge advantages when it comes to training prospective surgeons, so it is no longer such a drastic transition between studying off images and working on the real thing.
The market outlook for knee and hip replacements is promising; in 2021, total revenue for knee reconstruction was $8.4bn and $7.5bn for hip reconstruction and these values are expected to increase to $12.3bn and $10bn by 2030. Augmented reality is gradually being adopted in the healthcare space as the medical community is realising the substantial benefits of the improved efficiency and precision of surgical procedures that this technology can provide. It is expected that additional companies will develop AR devices of their own to tap into this growing demand. As it stands now, however, Enovis is the only company with a hands-free real-time AR device engineered specifically for orthopaedics.