Frequently Asked Questions
Why change from using the drill I am comfortable with?
The current system of screw-hole preparation is a three-step process. The SLICK drill-bit system removes one step - depth measurement with a depth gauge (the most fiddly step). The SLICK system provides accurate measurement directly from the drill bit. The SLICK system provides greater accuracy and repeat-ability than measurement with a depth gauge. Furthermore, all these features come at no additional cost.
We have calibrated drills already. Measurements can be taken from these drills. What is different about SLICK Universal drill system?
The SLICK drill bit is significantly different from calibrated drill bits that are currently available in the market. Existing calibrated drills do not provide accurately verified measurements, as there is no mechanism to lock them onto the far cortex of bone. With the SLICK Drill Bit, once you cross the far cortex, the wire and clip mechanism can be deployed which locks onto the outer cortex, giving you accurate measurement. Most of the surgeons who have used the SLICK universal system believe that the SLICK Drill Bit is even more accurate than a conventional depth gauge. This is because the oblique orientation of the measuring mechanism locks predictably at the bone-drill junction and does not ‘hook’ elsewhere, as a depth gauge can.
What if I forget to stop the drill machine once it crosses the far cortex?
With the SLICK drill bit, you do NOT need to stop as you cross the far cortex. Once the outer cortex is crossed, the locking & measuring mechanism can be deployed and an accurate measurement can be directly read from the drill bit.
Is The Slick Drill Bit System accurate?
Anecdotal feedback from clinical evaluations shows that the SLICK Drill Bit provides a more predictable and accurate reading than a depth gauge. The oblique, flexible measuring mechanism is manufactured from Nitinol wire. This is designed to snuggly lock at the bone-drill junction and when deployed, avoids ‘hooking’ onto bone fragments, or soft-tissue, as a conventional depth gauge often does.
I don’t need to use the depth gauge. I’m experienced enough to guess the screw length without using the depth gauge.
There is no alternative to surgical experience however better tools make the process faster and better. SLICK takes away the guess work and provides an accurate measurement without any additional step. NO more fiddling with the depth gauge.
It’s difficult to read off the drill. My vision is not good anymore.
The Slick universal drill bit comes with the large, clear fonts to suit the bit diameter. The measurement button has a flat surface with a contrasting colour, for easiest reading. The matt surface finish and font readability have been validated using various operating room lighting environments.
Is the SLICK drill bit performance different from current drill bit technology?
The actual drilling function is very similar to most other Orthopaedic drill bits. SLICK’s point of difference is a unique depth-measuring feature.
Can it be used with locking plate system?
Yes. The SLICK universal system can be used with ANY sleeve system including a locking sleeve used for any locking plate system.
Can it be used with other manufacturer's systems?
Yes. The SLICK system is fully compatible with other trauma instrument sets. The SLICK Drill Bits are made in a wide range of standard Orthopedic diameters.
How much does it cost to use the SLICK system versus the current drill system in use?
The SLICK Drill bit is priced to match pricing from most major manufacturers. This means that savings can be realized by virtue of the time and accuracy savings that it offers.
What cost efficiencies or savings can be expected when using the SLICK Drill System?
The SLICK system is designed to be simple, efficient, accurate and cost effective. The SLICK system removes one (often fiddly) step in screw hole preparation – depth gauging.
There are 6-9 screw-holes prepared during an average trauma surgery case. This means that the SLICK system can save up to 10 minutes of time during surgery or close to one hour during a full day of trauma-theatre activity.
Additional savings can come from time wasted trying to locate the hole-track when using a conventional depth gauge. The depth gauge step can become very time consuming and aberrant readings will often result in wrong-sized screws being used. Screw placement errors and/or extended radiation exposure to patients and health professionals result from hole/screw errors with conventional depth gauges.
The SLICK system’s accuracy in measurement helps to provide reduced implant wastage, reduced surgical time and reduced radiation exposure.
New technologies are expensive. Under current economic climate, adopting a new technology is difficult.
SLICK drill bit is very competitively priced. In most instances, it’s on par and in some instances even cheaper compared to other drills in the market from other well established companies. Great savings can be realised by virtue of its features.
Does the SLICK Drill Bit system come packaged as a single-use, sterile product?
Yes. We currently supply the SLICK Universal system in single sterile packs, ready-to-use in theatres. (sold in outer boxes of 5 units)
What are the sizes available?
Slick Drill bit sizing covers most of the common trauma procedures. Our off the shelf size range is; 1.8mm, 2mm, 2.3mm, 2.5mm, 2.7mm, 2.8mm, 3.2mm, 3.5mm, 4.0mm, 4.3mm.
What is involved in a hospital changeover to the SLICK system?
Converting to the SLICK drill-bit system is designed to be easy for a customer. No extra capital, inventory or training cost are required for the changeover. The SLICK universal drill bits come in all the common sizes and the system is fully compatible with almost all trauma instrument set.
The hospital’s current range of depth gauges and drill sleeves can be used for multiple surgeries and rarely need to be replaced. Is this correct?
Drill sleeves and depth gauges can be used across multiple surgeries. However they succumb to user-wear and must be replaced when damaged or broken. Hospitals usually have depth gauges and drill sleeves within each trauma set. Tracking their usage, sterilisation, integrity, and accuracy is difficult. Typically depth gauges and drill sleeves are subjected to repeated wear and tear with ongoing monitoring usually occurring due to failures or challenges encountered when operating on a patient.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that depth gauges can last for 30-50 surgeries and drill-sleeve/tissue-protectors for 50-70 surgeries.
Does the SLICK drill-bit cannulation makes the drill weaker?
Our drill bits are made using advanced manufacturing techniques and surgical grade materials. The SLICK system has been tested to ensure predictable shaft flexibility and comparable strength to standard drill bits.
Can the wire tip break?
The wire is made from a biocompatible Nitinol and has passed our rigorous quality standards. It is extremely unlikely to break when used correctly.
What if the wire doesn't pull back? Will it cause damage to the bone or surrounding tissue when the drill is reversed out?
No. It doesn't cause any serious damage to the surrounding tissue. The wire is very flexible and will wrap itself around the drill bit flute. If the drill is powered while the wire is still deployed – the wire tip will bend into the flute.
What type of customer support will you provide?
Customer support is provided by our trained sales personal. Onsite hands-on training will be provided at the time of introduction. Refresher inservice training is proved on ad hoc basis. Customer feedback will be recorded and used for product improvement.
How do we deal with product issues or complaints?
The company will follow the rules and recommendation of the regulatory system under which the SLICK drills have been sold.