A new method for interventional cardiac procedures


We partnered with a consultant interventional cardiologist to solve a clinical need: to reduce the complexity and patient recovery time when accessing the axillary artery during interventional cardiology procedures.


The priority for the project team was to build a deep understanding of interventional cardiology by working closely with the clinician. We used this knowledge to quickly develop a feasible concept which we evaluated iteratively to ensure technical and clinical feasibility.


Team Consulting developed a novel concept which can improve accuracy when locating and accessing the axillary artery during cardiac intervention, making the procedure safer for patients and easier for clinicians.

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A new way of performing interventional cardiology

Dr Stephen Hoole, a consultant interventional cardiologist for Royal Papworth Hospital in the United Kingdom and experienced MedTech innovator, wanted to create a less invasive approach to accessing the axillary artery for large bore procedures such as Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI). Dr Hoole highlighted that percutaneous access of the axillary artery is notoriously difficult due to its relatively ‘free movement’ caused by a lack of bone underneath it. He wanted to explore the potential of an ‘inside out’ approach: accessing the axillary artery via the radial artery to facilitate the large bore access.

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Understanding anatomy, workflows and constraints

We assembled a project team including engineers and designers and worked closely with Dr Hoole to quickly define relevant anatomy, the state-of-the-art in large bore access, pain points in current procedures and critical requirements and constraints.

Using creativity within constraints to overcome key challenges

With deep understanding of the anatomy and clinical, technical and usability constraints, we ran a series of design sprints to find solutions to the key challenges associated with an ‘inside out’ radial approach, namely how to:

• orientate a catheter in a small space
• exit the axillary artery from the inside via radial access
• re-orientate the catheter towards the exit site
• insert the catheter required for the final procedure back into the artery

Working collaboratively with the clinician

The project team developed an ‘innovation landscape’ to provide a clear picture of the opportunities, pain points and potential solutions from the initial sprint. This facilitated a close collaboration between Dr Hoole and the team to evolve different approaches and converge towards the optimal solution. This close collaboration was key to defining a novel and clinically feasible concept with a clear development pathway for Dr Hoole to use in his translational planning.

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Problems in medicine are often best solved collaboratively and utilizing skilled professionals from other disciplines and walks of life, who see problems from a completely different perspective, often generates new solutions.

This underpins the benefits Team can offer within a vibrant and creative innovation hub. The road to new discoveries in medicine can be arduous, but Team support innovators every step of the way from initial concept through to prototype and final IP submission and do so with measured optimism and positivity that is so important.

Dr Stephen Hoole, Interventional Cardiologist, Royal Papworth Hospital


Team produced a technical and clinically feasible concept which is being developed further by Dr Hoole. The solution offers a new method for axillary arterial access with improved precision for clinicians and reduced recovery time for patients.

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