“Entrepreneurs are inherently optimistic – we were and are no different. As first-time entrepreneurs, we didn’t appreciate all of the challenges involved with commercializing a medical device, but we knew we had the potential to make a positive impact on the lives of those suffering from ailing joints,” said Bakirtzian, co-founder and CEO of Intellijoint Surgical.
And yet despite all the challenges, Intellijoint Surgical has now completed over 20,000 total hip replacement procedures with its flagship product – Intellijoint HIP. When asked what 20,000 means to him, co-founder and CTO Andre Hladio notes, “to me, every one of those 20,000 is an individual who was suffering enough to accept surgery as their last resort; and everyone one of those 20,000 was done by a surgeon that trusted us in how they care for their patients.”
A thought shared by Richard Fanson, co-founder and CSO of Intellijoint Surgical, “we’ve been able to help 20,000 patients in their hip replacement journey and 20,000 surgeons have used us to make sure they deliver the best care they can.”
Intellijoint is now 11 years into existence. And while the design and the delivery of Intellijoint HIP have evolved over the last 11 years, the goal has remained the same, help improve patients lives by providing surgeons with effective, easy-to-use technology. This is the mission that helps guide the company and one that is echoed around the office (pre-COVID of course) when employees are writing code, doing research, developing new product features, crafting marketing campaigns or welcoming new team members.
But beyond the doors of the office are where some of the biggest wins for the company have taken place with “the surgeons and nurses who have helped us so much along the way – talking to us in their offices, hearing us out with our prototypes, showing us their processes, giving feedback, thoughts, and opinions in surgeon lounges, hospital hallways, and the operating rooms, and telling us what is working and what isn’t. They helped us make the product the best that we can,” said Fanson.
That product has now been used in over 20,000 total hip replacement procedures in the US, Canada and Australia. The first commercial case was performed in 2016.
When asked if he ever envisioned hitting 20,000 hips, Bakirtzian notes, “these were the milestones we envisioned and hoped for when we founded Intellijoint in 2010. In hindsight, we now appreciate how difficult it is for a start-up to achieve commercial success and we are so thankful to be at that stage as a team. We are fortunate to have an amazing support system and a phenomenal team dedicated to realizing our mission and vision.”
For more information, visit www.intellijointsurgical.com.