Design of a Reusable Clip Applier Attachment for the Lapro-Clip[TM] Device


Medtronic (formerly Covidien) Team: Adrienne Saludades, Alexandra Williams, Fatima Bassir, Essence White

2014-2015: In collaboration with Medtronic (formerly Covidien), this student team designed a reusable clip applier attachment for the Lapro-Clip clip applier device, which is used in Minimally Invasive Surgery to ligate blood vessels. The goal of the attachment was to increase the functionality of the Lapro-Clip device by allowing it to accept medium titanium clips as well as the original polymer clips.

The team determined the key design requirements based on the existing Lapro-Clip device and stakeholder needs such as safety, biocompatibility, and performance. The team generated a wide range of possible design concepts, informed by patent reviews, competitor product analyses, and multiple concept generation techniques, and selected a design concept inspired by a set of cooking tongs. Through multiple rounds of design modeling and refinement, the team improved the design functions including jaw closure, actuator-jaw part dependence, clip security, and Lapro-Clip shaft insertion. The team wrote several new verification protocols and completed initial verification of their final design on a 5x-scale 3D-printed prototype.

The team delivered a demonstration prototype, SolidWorks files, failure modes and effects analysis documentation, and a manufacturability analysis to Medtronic for continued development and verification.