Micrive Infinite describes itself as the pioneer and leader of medical 3D printing technologies in Kenya. They work in partnerships and close contact with Surgeons to create life size patient-specific, anatomically accurate models.
The idea to start the company came from a personal experience that founder Chris Mukaguri had a few years back. According to Chris, on December 2014, he underwent surgery on his leg and thereafter, had a difficult recovery period. The reason for this is that the fracture he had had been difficult for the surgeons to visualize on the scans. When the doctors were operating, they found the situation to be worse than they had thought. The situation raised the issue of the surgeon’s level of planning being limited due to lack of access to technology. This led Chris to start looking for a solution.
Chris describes 3D Printing as additive manufacturing. With traditional manufacturing, you have a block of material which you chip away at to get the final product. With 3D Printing, you start with nothing and add materials until you get the final product making it additive manufacturing.
Micrive Infinite is a company that uses 3D Printing technology to help doctors save lives. According to Chris, they help make treatment easy by aiding in the planning of surgeries. Many surgical fields can benefit from the technology including maxillofacial surgery, neurosurgery and orthopedic surgery.
Micrive Infinite works with surgeons who best understand what 3D Printing technology means to their surgeries and for their patients. Surgeons utilize the 3D models to better visualize and plan for their surgeries. Additionally, Micrive Infinite can design custom made implants for patients. Normally, standard implants are purchased which the surgeons have to make fit their patient. With 3D Printing technology, Micrive Infinite can design a custom implant to fit a particular patient and their unique needs.
One of the challenges the company has faced thus far is getting the surgeons to trust in the technology. Additionally, it has been difficult to get patients to pay that little bit extra for the models. However, this is becoming less of a challenge as patients begin to realize the benefits of the technology.
From his experience, a piece of advice that Chris can give to budding entrepreneurs is to not be a coward. According to him, the people we call extraordinary are still ordinary people but they made a decision to take a different kind of life. Chris says that if you want to start a business no matter how radical, do it. He adds that there is no small idea, only the man.