For single use only, Holmed’s torque limiter can reduce the incidence of infection while eliminating the need for autoclaving and recalibration.
It is an article of faith in the medical device manufacturing industry that a steadily aging population will require increasing interventions from orthopedic specialists. Just ask middle-aged people about their fingers, back, or knees. And when you add into the mix the younger, more-active sections of the population that jog, visit fitness centers, or play professional sports, it’s no wonder that orthopedic medicine has taken off for doctors and patients alike. But from implants and bone replacements to surgical devices and instruments, orthopedics translates into the need for new technologies and companies that design and manufacture them. One such company is Holmed Corp. (South Easton, MA).
“We started out approximately 45 years ago as a small, two-person operation mainly serving the ophthalmology business,” recounts Peter Randall, Holmed’s vice president of sales. “Over time, we grew into a contract orthopedic hand-instrument company and were purchased by the current owner 30 years ago.” As a contract manufacturer of orthopedic instruments, the company has developed a range of products used in spine, knee, hip, shoulder, and small-joint surgery. “This accounts for approximately 80% of our current sales. The rest is general contract manufacturing services, such as CNC turning and milling, wire EDM, honing, and grinding,” Randall remarks.
With decades of engineering experience in surgical instrument design and OEM manufacturing under its belt, the company specializes in a variety of products, including screwdrivers, trauma instruments, holders and grips, and retractors. Operating with a staff of CAD engineers and prototype machinists, the service provider boasts that it has designed hundreds of orthopedic instruments, either from scratch or by modifying existing products. As a manufacturer, it uses most forms of stainless steel and many other materials, such as aluminum, plastics, titanium, and silicone.
“The majority of our products are geared toward the spine market,” Randall comments. “The focus is instrumentation for minimally invasive surgery and spinal fusion. Our main activity is designing and manufacturing minimally invasive surgery retractor systems, silicone-molded handle products, cutting devices, and torque-limiting and torque-indicating devices.” One such product is a new disposable torque limiter, which accommodates torque requirements up to 12 N•m with an accuracy rating of ±10% up to 100 clicks, depending on the torque specification. For single use only, the instrument can reduce the incidence of infection while eliminating the need for autoclaving and recalibration. Suitable for surgical use with the young as well as the over-50 crowd, this component will figure prominently among Holmed’s standard wares at MD&M West. “For its initial release,” Randall says, “this product will target the sports medicine, trauma, and spinal markets.”