3M Spot On

The Request

Arizant Healthcare Inc., a 3M company, is the leader in the active control of core body temperature in surgical patients. The company created the category of forced-air patient warming, the preferred method of warming surgical patients in the U.S., utilizing specially equipped warming blankets and warming gowns. One key aspect of controlling body temperature is knowing the body’s true core temperature at any point of the perioperative journey and in real time. Historically, getting a core temperature reading has been difficult because it has required some level of invasive sensor placement. They approached Mindtribe to develop a means for accurately tracking the core body temperature. Based on a technique developed by Arizant to create an “isothermal tunnel” between the body’s core and surface of the skin, Mindtribe assisted Arizant with developing this technique into a user friendly, production-ready product design.

The Work

Arming Mindtribe with a background in warming technology, Mindtribe leveraged electrical engineering and firmware design to translate temperature monitoring science and a novel sensor into a real product operating within a surgical environment. Mindtribe started with temperature monitoring science and created prototypes of the sensor and the control unit to translate the science into a product. The team worked through engineering challenges—the sensor performance was highly sensitive to conditions experienced on actual patients, and the system was very small, requiring very sophisticated processing to make it work. Mindtribe designed electronics and firmware for both the single-use, disposable sensor and the control unit and display.

The Outcome

The result was the launch of an accurate, noninvasive core body temperature measurement system that met the requirements of Arizant. The product received FDA approval and became available for use in 2012, ensuring the precision in measurement required by medical professionals as well as the comfort of patients.