Krupa's Back Pages

June 2, 2010

The OmniGuide Laser

Filed under: Healthcare,Technology,Venture Capital — Steve Krupa @ 7:34 pm
Tags: , , ,

Happy Physicist Yoel Fink

Here’s a fun shot of a very happy (and brilliant) CEO Yoel Fink, who runs one of our (Psilos’) portfolio companies, OmniGuide.  This picture was featured in a massdevice.com article that just came out and it reminded me that I have yet to post on Yoel’s company.

OmniGuide falls into the medical device segment of our healthcare investment portfolio.  Over the past 40+ years VCs have invested in incredible medical devices and diagnostic inventions that have led a revolution in medicine, extending life and improving lifesyle.  Unfortunately, our current healthcare related financial crisis is one of the unintended consequences of this revolution.

In anticipation of an era of financial constraints on the healthcare system, our investment approach is to back new medical devices that not only provide a new standard in quality outcomes, but also reduce cost to the health system and align the economic incentives of payers (insuers, gov’t, consumers), providers (doctors and hospitals) and patients (consumers).  OmniGuide’s BeamPath laser technology is a product that does just that and more.

Below is a 5 minute video of a report on CNN on how a Wake Forest surgeon found OmniGuide’s BeamPath and used it to remove what was believed to be an inoperable brain tumor.

What I think you pick up from this video is that OmniGuide has developed a one of a kind medical invention that saved a life that was unlikely to have survived previously.  While this is incredible, we were attracted to investing in the company because the CO2 laser operates with virtually no collateral damage, making it the perfect scalpel for operating near sensitive tissue (think the brain, the prostate, the uterus, the ear, the eye, etc.).  Also, the newfound ability to bend this laser enables its use as a minimally invasive surgical method.  These two features together reduce the trauma from a procedure and improve the surgical efficiency, producing better outcomes (higher qualilty) and better productivity (reduced hospital costs).

In this case, it just so happens that OmniGuide’s technology is also groundbreaking in and of itself.  Yoel figured out how to bend a CO2 laser without energy loss, something that was thought to be near impossible, and then manufacture his perfect mirror to a size that produces a 10s micron laser profile, enabling its use in minimally invasive surgery.

For more on OmniGuide, click here.  Awesome.

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