Orthopedic templating software helps surgeons design more accurate implants. This article dives into both examples and features to look for.
Before you bring home a new sofa from the store, measuring the room where it will live is a good idea. Planning ahead means the furniture you picked will work just how you want it to in the space you’ve got.
Of course, people aren’t sofas, but much like measuring a room, orthopedic templating software can help you design implants and prostheses that are just the right fit for your orthopedic surgery patients.
Orthopedic templating software is a valuable tool for preoperative planning that enhances patient outcomes and improves surgeons’ workflows. However, not all software is made equal, and there are key features you shouldn’t compromise on if you want to unlock the full benefits of the technology.
What is orthopedic templating software?
Orthopedic templating software helps you develop an orthopedic implant that’s more accurate in size and placement. In addition, you can use the software to ensure a near-perfect match to the patient’s specific anatomy.
Digital orthopedic templating uses radiographs to create a digital representation of an implant. As a result, it provides better accuracy and reliability regarding an orthopedic implant’s size, position, and alignment.
The technology uses radiographs like X-ray images and CT scans. But instead of having to layer transparencies of an implant over the radiographs, templating software allows you to preview a digital representation of the implant.
From there, you can compare the size of the implant and its position against your patient’s anatomy. This more accurate and realistic view allows you to better preview post-operative results and make any changes before the procedure.
Orthopedic templating software is inclusive of the orthopedic spectrum and not restricted to one area — it can be used for a standard hip arthroplasty as well as in trauma injury situations.
Benefits of orthopedic templating software
Digital templating allows you to effectively plan your surgeries by giving you a preview of how an implant will fit into the surgical field.
Digital templating will likely result in less operating time. Unlike traditional analog templating, you don’t need to test different implants during surgery because the software has already selected the correct one for your patient.
Orthopedic templating software also helps decrease post-surgery complications, including leg length inequality. Having the correct sizing and positioning of the implant before surgery means it will successfully serve the patient for a more extended period.
The AI technology of digital templating can also improve workflow in your practice. Specific software available, including Materialise’s OrthoView, offers customizable tools that learn your individual planning and preferred surgical strategies, saving time for future procedures.
3 digital templating software features to look for
When selecting orthopedic templating software, there are three core features you need in order to reap the benefits of the technology.
1. An extensive digital template library
A template library will give you access to most, if not all, major implant brands so you can find the right fit, no matter the patient or procedure.
Each patient comes with their own unique needs. And not having access to a considerable library of templates could mean more time spent planning and more time before your patient can have their procedure while you search for the correct implant.
2. Automation for simplified procedures
Automation in orthopedic templating software results in more accuracy and helps take the guesswork and trial and error out of the equation.
Features like landmark and image detection, bone segmentation, and correct implant size selection do the heavy lifting on your behalf and, ultimately, improve precision. Additionally, automatic updates ensure you always have the latest version of the software you’re using, including an updated template library.
3. PACS integration
PACS, which stands for picture archiving and communication system, is a technology that allows you to access, store, and interpret images from X-rays and CT scans within your practice and externally.
A PACS integration provides a digital storage solution within the software, so you don’t have to worry about waiting for image acquisition — which is often a challenge in any healthcare setting. Say a patient goes for a CT scan. The images would then be transmitted digitally via the PACS integration within your templating software, which is more efficient than manually retrieving, transporting, and filing the images in film jackets. A PACS integration means not having to wait for image retrieval and not delaying patient care.
Examples of orthopedic templating software
Since templating software made its way to orthopedics, many companies emerged with impressive software to help orthopedic surgeons improve the accuracy of implant placement during surgery.
PeekMed uses AI to automate orthopedic processes, including surgical planning, landmark detection, and bone segmentation. The software offers 2D and 3D templates, automatically selects the most optimal option, and places it in the correct position for better surgical accuracy.
PeekMed’s software also allows you to simulate various procedural outcomes.
Brainlab’s TraumaCad includes an extensive library of digital templates. It also offers a complete set of measurement tools for “THR (total hip replacement), TKR (total knee replacement), trauma, pediatric, deformity correction,” and more. The software automatically recognizes calibration devices that allow you to measure and choose the most accurate template.
TraumaCad’s preoperative templating software automatically generates comprehensive reports that include patient images, information about the specific implant, and measurements taken.
Radlink’s OrthoPlan 2.0 for total knee and hip arthroplasty streamlines surgical planning. It allows you to create a personalized preoperative patient plan or a “roadmap” for surgery that seamlessly integrates into the OR.
OrthoPlan provides an extensive template library, PACS integration, and automated software that chooses the right implant size before placing it and simulating the post-operative result. You can also compare your preoperative plans against live images taken during the procedure to confirm everything is running smoothly.
According to parent company Materialise, OrthoView has been used by more than 15,000 orthopedic surgeons since 2002 for hip and knee arthroplasties, shoulder and small joint replacements, fracture management, deformity correction, and spine procedures.
OrthoView’s adaptive nature saves you time with its customizable tools that memorize your specific workflow and strategy. The software boasts a digital library with more than 220,000 templates, PACS integration, landmark detection, live on-image reports, and more.
Joints Plan is Medstrat’s digital templating software solution that identifies the correct implant size, provides accurate measurements, and enables collaboration that allows healthcare providers to improve operating room efficiency.
Joints Plan’s PACS integration allows you to collaborate with more than 4,000 orthopedic surgeons currently using the software, generate surgical plans to display in the operating room, and decrease time in surgery thanks to the accurate preoperative determination of implant size.
Complement templating software with more cutting-edge tech
Exer Health’s AI capabilities can enhance the work your orthopedic templating software does for patients during their recovery period. To learn more, request a demo today.
And to see what other AI-powered orthopedic technologies are shaping the field in 2023, read our article here.
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