Cochlear has filed a patent for a method and system that uses a plurality of electrodes to measure the pose of an implanted medical device in a recipient’s body. The system generates a gradient vector dataset based on the measurement values and uses it to estimate the device’s pose. The estimated pose information can be provided through an output interface. GlobalData’s report on Cochlear gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Cochlear, Neuromodulation implants was a key innovation area identified from patents. Cochlear's grant share as of September 2023 was 47%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

A system for estimating the pose of a medical device

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Cochlear Ltd

A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230309891A1) describes a system and method for estimating the pose of a medical device during implantation. The system includes a data input interface that receives data from multiple transducers of the medical device, a controller that generates measurement values and gradient vector phase values based on the received data, and an output interface that provides information about the estimated pose of the medical device.

The system also includes a control output interface that transmits control signals to the transducers, allowing them to generate the necessary data. The controller, which includes a processor and a storage device, collects and stores the data. The medical device in question is a Cochlear implant auditory prosthesis, and the body portion refers to the cochlea of the recipient.

During implantation, the controller can automatically transmit control signals to the transducers. Additionally, a user input interface allows intermittent triggering signals to be sent to the controller, which then transmits control signals accordingly. The output interface can communicate with a status communication device or a computing device used by a medical professional.

The method described in the patent involves receiving a measurement set comprising measurement values generated by electrodes along an elongate structure. Based on this measurement set, a gradient vector dataset is generated, which is then used to evaluate the pose of the structure relative to the body portion. The evaluation can be communicated in real-time to an operator of an insertion system or an automated surgical system.

The method also includes filtering the measurement values and gradient vector phase values to remove abnormal values caused by electrode-tissue interface issues or short circuits. Common ground impedance (CGI) measurement values can be used to identify abnormal electrodes. The measurement values can be normalized before generating the gradient vector dataset.

The evaluation of the pose involves calculating a gradient phase range (GPR) value, which is based on the gradient vector phase values. Folded and unfolded pose evaluations are determined based on the GPR value and the number of valid gradient vectors. In the case of a folded pose evaluation, the estimated foldover apex of the structure can be determined.

Overall, this patent describes a system and method that can provide real-time information about the pose of a medical device during implantation, particularly in the context of a Cochlear implant. This technology has the potential to improve the accuracy and efficiency of implantation procedures.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies