The orthopedic disruptors this ASC leader is most excited about

When it comes to technology and innovation, orthopedics has always been on the cutting edge.

Kyle Anderson, vice president of finance and ASC at Ortho Rhode Island in Warwick, spoke with Becker's to discuss the orthopedic industry disruptors he is most excited about.

Note: This response has been lightly edited for length and clarity

Question: What orthopedic industry disruptors are you most excited about?

Kyle Anderson: Orthopedics is so ripe for technologies and innovations. So there are certain disruptors that you sort of keep an eye on that serve the basic blocking and tackling of operating in a center and technologies or advances that help you to achieve efficiencies associated with time. Whether or not that is optimizing time or measuring time or anything that allows you to control some of the variables throughout the day. But from a true industry disruptor standpoint, when I think about the technology bucket, I think about virtual or mixed reality, whether or not those are headsets or some other technologies that have the opportunity to be embedded into the entire surgical process.

So whether or not that is a component of the preoperative planning, fractured care, joint arthroplasty or intraoperative immersion, when you think about how do I use the preoperative planning in the case, the traditional way to do it is to have a couple of screens up and toggle between them and rely on the planning that you've performed. But virtual or mixed reality immersion provides the opportunity to do that simultaneously. 

[Regarding] postoperative pain control, I think that there's some reasonable data that says people recover better and faster with less pain with the implementation of a virtual or mixed reality. So there's a full patient experience component of that. If you step away from the operating room, you can even enter into an arena in which your procedural room-based interventions can be coupled with virtual or mixed reality to present a calming effect if maybe someone can't tolerate anesthesia. Now you are not only just improving the patient experience, but actually in fact allowing a procedure to be performed that otherwise wouldn't. In the nonmedical space, you see this advancing in such a competitive way. All of the big vendors have their own versions of these things. But you know, as far as really making an impact on the surgical arena, that's something that I will continue to keep my eye on and look forward to.

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