Medical & Scientific Products

Siemens Symbia Medical Imaging Systems


Symbia is a medical imaging system that merges diagnostic-quality CT and SPECT imaging into one step for faster and more accurate medical diagnoses. This system also increases workflow optimization for clinicians and enhances patient throughput, and the machine requires less space and fewer personnel to operate. Despite its state-of-the art technology, Symbia is not intimidating to patients. Comfort is increased by the open architecture, integrated audio/visual patient entertainment system and easier ingress and egress. Backlit translucent materials, light colors and fresh graphics lend an emotional approachability as well.

“This product has a big kick but a small footprint. There’s a lot of technology—and a lot of cost—going on here, but its presence is light, cool and respectful.”
--John Thackara, director, Doors of Perception

Contact: Robert Henshaw, IDSA
Formation Design Group

Credit: Siemens Medical Systems, Formation Design Group, designafairs (Germany), and Ergonomic Systems Design

Cybertech MAT Mechanical Advantage Tourniquet


The MAT is a next-generation tourniquet for military, law enforcement and emergency services applications. Besides meeting numerous Department of Defense performance requirements (occludes blood flow in less than one minute, applicable to a trapped limb, one-handed application, useable on both an arm or leg, easily released and reapplied, and weighs less than 8 ounces), the design needed to be easily understood and self-applied by someone in extreme stress. Its clean, simple design and obvious visual cues make operation intuitive. A gaping hook at the top end of the unit indicates that something attaches to it. The only possibility available to the user is the tension-lock buckle on the strap. After completing this step, visual cues on the brace indicate that the large turnbuckle needs to be turned, whereby the blood flow stops. The design has been successfully used in combat conditions, in the dark, underwater and in extreme weather conditions.

“…brings simplicity and elegance to a very traumatic event. Very appropriate aesthetics give a soft comforting feeling without losing the perception that this is a serious piece of equipment.”
--Tor Alden, IDSA, principal, HS Design Inc.

Contact:Steven Ewing
Ewing Design Group

Credit: Cybertech Medical and Ewing Design Group

Signa HDe 1.5T MR Diagnostic Imaging System

The Signa HDe 1.5T, an entry-level MR (magnetic resonance) diagnostic imaging system, offers a number of advances over the previous model. The design particularly addresses the desire to target space-limited markets, such as Asia, with a smaller footprint, simpler installation and complete upgradeability. Installation time has been decreased by 50 percent, requiring only one worker and two tools. The new enclosure design can accommodate older systems without changing magnets, a significant factor since 50 percent of systems sold are upgrades. Its aesthetic is fresh and patient friendly, yet timeless enough to withstand the typical installation periods of between 5 and 15 years. New multi-language controls increase global ease of use and patient safety.

Contact: Jonathan Polhamus,IDSA

Credit: GE Healthcare Global Design


VisIV™ flexible intravenous container

The VisIV intravenous flexible container is the first significant redesign of the IV bag in three decades. It features plastics that eliminate waste and speed up the delivery of the medication. Larger pre-sterilized medication ports provide confidence of the medication integrity and protect caregivers against accidental needle sticks. The VisIV container produces approximately 40-70 percent less waste than other flexible IV containers. If the entire hospital industry converted to VisIV, it is estimated that 20 million pounds of waste would be reduced annually. Combining this savings with the added caregiver and patient safety and increased efficiency, hospitals may find that VisIV’s higher cost is more than offset by its benefits.

Contact: customercare@hospira.coma

Credit: Hospira, Inc.

Client: Hospira, Inc.

LifePort® Liver Workstation

The LifePort Liver Workstation simplifies the entire organ recovery, rehabilitation and transplantation process. With its modular construction, components can be quickly configured for a heart, lung, kidney or pancreas. However, because LifePort differs substantially from traditional organ-recovery devices, its design anticipates the resistance surgeons and clinicians might have. Its form promotes a unified, competent and trustworthy appearance, and its clean, confident design is approachable while conveying state-of-the art technology and functional simplicity. Primary control elements are grouped according to function and are physically adjacent to the components they control. By giving doctors a flexible, stable and highly functional device, the designers of LifePort hope to increase the number of organs available for transplant.


Credit: Formation Design Group, Organ Recovery Systems, UZ Leuven Heelkunde (Belgium) and Scott Padiak and Associates

Client: Organ Recovery Systems

ProAxis Bariatric Care Bed

The ProAxis Bariatric Care Bed was designed to satisfy the unique demands of caring for patients weighing over 700 pounds. While its extra-wide mattress platform can accommodate the largest patients, the bed has a standard width that easily fits through doors and in elevators—which helps patients to maintain their dignity. All the bed’s functions are electronically controlled, reducing the potential for manual handling injuries. The ergonomically designed powered platform can be programmed to slowly move patients through a predetermined series of movements that continually redistributes the point loading of their weight eliminating discomfort and reducing infection from bed sores. Since its release, sales have increased by 287 percent over the previous model.

Contact: Jarred Evans

Credit: PDR (United Kingdom)

Client:Nightingale Care Beds Ltd. (United Kingdom)

MAGICWHEELS™ 2-gear wheelchair drive

Arm and shoulder pain or injury is common among manual wheelchair users. However, with the installation of MAGICWHEELS, users need only exert half the effort to climb everyday obstacles. These attachable geared wheels offer two modes: 1:1, which is the same as a conventional wheelchair, and 2:1, which allows users to climb hills, brake and stop with half the effort. The black components against the carbon-fiber dish wheel convey a sleek, sophisticated, non-institutional look that speaks to its innovativeness. MAGICWHEELS is usable with 75 percent of wheelchairs, giving people the opportunity for an incalculable boost to their quality of life.


Credit: Magic Wheels, Inc. and Carlson Studios

Client: Magic Wheels, Inc.

Nanopoint cellTRAY

With cellTRAY, a microscope slide with integrated bio-incubator, researchers are able to perform time-lapse imaging of living cells for the first time. An array of 7,614 micron-sized wells can sustain living cells in a liquid medium, and a network of microfluidics channels supplies nutrients (and reagents) and removes metabolic waste. Designers were challenged with developing a design expression to communicate this new technology that is so advanced it is invisible to the naked eye. Each cellTRAY is packaged in a custom enclosure that protects it during shipping and in the laboratory, functions as a custom Petri dish, guides users through the correct procedures and archives the cells. It was also designed to be compatible with standard laboratory equipment.

“How to communicate a solution so advanced that one cannot see it with the naked eye? The design of the Nanopoint delivers a new solution in the field of cell culturing and nanotechnology.”

Ruth Soénius, IDSA, Director, User Experience, Siemens Corporate Research, Inc.

Contact: Fernd van Engelen, IDSA
Carbon Design

Credit: Carbon Design Group and Nanopoint, Inc

Client: Nanopoint Inc.

4D localization system

The Calypso 4D Localization System is a medical device that guides radiation therapy delivery with sub-millimeter accuracy, reducing complications from organ motion during treatment. It uses electromagnetic fields to locate implanted miniature circuit transponders, smaller than a grain of rice, which continuously monitor tumor position during radiation therapy. Care was taken to avoid the conventional lab-equipment look prevalent in most radiation therapy rooms. The result is a non-threatening and approachable form that enhances the therapeutic environment for patients.

“…an example of great design thinking and modern and compelling visual language. The design sends a strong message through precision technology and ergonomic focus.”

Ruth Soénius, IDSA, Director, User Experience, Siemens Corporate Research, Inc.

Contact: Whitney Mortimer

Credit: IDEO, ZIBA Design Inc. and Calypso® Medical Technologies, Inc.

Client: Calypso® Medical Technologies, Inc.

Calypso Design Research

Existing radiation treatments for prostate cancer can damage healthy tissue. Calypso, a medical start-up, had a revolutionary idea. By injecting a transponder into cancerous tissue, radiation could be better targeted at the tumor, sparing healthy tissue. However, Calypso’s innovative technology needed to be packaged into a product and a procedure that oncologists would accept as a viable alternative to existing methods. An iterative approach of field research, scenario creation, prototyping and user testing defined an interaction strategy and a product concept that delivered the right balance of efficiency and accuracy.

Credits: Eric Park, Doug Cooke, IDSA, Sabrina Jetton, Joshua Hoyt and Jonathon Dalton, IDSA of Ziba Design
Client: Calypso Medical Technologies Inc.
Contact: Rebekah Ratner-Singh: