Custom C-Arm Replica

Radiation free fluoroscopy training

“In the first 18 months after establishment, The Stone Institute trained 630 physicians globally in the surgical skills for flexible ureteroscopy and percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PNL). Post-program surveys found that surgeons doubled their confidence level in the key skills, and procedure volumes increased, achieving the overall goal of improving patient health.” 

Global Director, Product Management; Urology and Pelvic Health.


The Challenge:

How can you provide radiation-free PCNL training that requires fluoroscopy? How can you conveniently teach physicians anywhere in the world, in any setting, how to properly position a mini C-arm so they can see the stones within the kidney calyces? C-Arms are definitely not portable, fluoroscopy absolutely uses radiation to see inside a patient exposing both the physicians and the trainers to radiation.


Model Design and Development:

Boston Scientific came to Pulse MDM with the concept of using a clear anatomy model and a USB camera to create a remote faux fluoroscopy image on a laptop screen. Because the model is clear already, no radiation is required. The physicians are required to look at a screen to do the procedure so having clear anatomy does not give an unrealistic training advantage. Pulse experimented with a process to produce a crystal-clear material that the camera can see through and that feels realistic when puncturing with a needle. To create the C-Arm replica we needed to replicate the C-Arm movement on 2 axes while making sure that the unit could be disassembled to the smallest cube possible. The assembly of the model needed to be intuitive to transcend the many cultures all over the world that this model would be shipped and preclude the need for written instructions in countless different languages.


Model Benefit:

Pulse MDM created a portable mini C-Arm, that utilizes a novel clear kidney calyces model with true-to-life needle puncture pressure that when looked at through custom camera & software replicates fluoroscopy images on a screen. The C-Arm model mimics the same degrees of movement as a real C-Arm so physicians practice positioning with a full range of motion. Designed for easy set-up, break-down, and transport, the model augments physician training programs around the globe.


Although this custom model is not available for sale to the public, we are delighted to make you a version that is specific to your unique medical device and procedure. Please use this link to start the process of receiving a model concept; a visual representation of how clinicians and patients will experience your product and procedure. Pulse MDM does not charge for model concepts or the conversations around them so there is no risk to see how we can help you to tell your story in the most engaging and memorable way possible.

 Custom Portable C-Arm Model

Procedure Overview:

Percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) is a minimally invasive procedure to remove stones from the kidney or upper ureter.  The surgery is performed by making a small 1 cm incision in the patient’s back. A tube is placed through the incision into the kidney under fluoroscopy guidance. A small telescope is then passed through the tube in order to visualize the stone, break it up and remove it from the body. If necessary, a laser or other device called a lithotripter may be used to break up the stone before it can be removed. This procedure has resulted in significantly less post-operative pain, a shorter hospital stays when compared to open stone surgery.

Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy