Digital surgery startup Apella scoops up $21M

Surgery tech company Apella scored $21 million in a Series A funding round led by Casdin Capital.

Other investors in this round of financing include Vensana Capital, PFM Health Sciences, Twine Ventures, Upside Partnership and Operator Partners.


Apella’s first digital surgery products are AI-enabled sensors that can be installed in an operating room to collect data on surgeries. That data can be used to improve operations, train staffers, make medical decisions and improve outcomes.

“At Apella, we know that you can’t improve what you can’t measure,” David Schummers, cofounder and CEO of Apella, said in a statement. “We are developing systematic methods for continuous improvement that can be applied to all types of surgeries and medical procedures.”


The company will use the Series A funds to install its system in new hospitals. It also plans to hire new team members and create new applications for its platform.


A variety of other companies are building digital tools to improve surgical quality and training. 

London-based Proximie uses augmented reality, AI and machine learning to allow doctors to virtually scrub into operations and provide support remotely. The company partnered with telehealth giant Teladoc Health this fall to integrate its software into Teladoc’s virtual care platform for hospitals and health systems. 

Medical technology and supply company Hillrom launched its Helion Integrated Surgical System in July, which helps surgical teams communicate and manage patient information during procedures. 

In April, Activ Surgical received FDA clearance for its intraoperative imaging module ActivSight, aimed at giving surgeons real-time visuals during operations.

Several companies are also using virtual reality for surgical training or preparation. Vantari VR, FundamentalVR and Osso VR can all be used to train doctors or medical students for surgeries or other clinical work.

Meanwhile PrecisionOS scored FDA 510(k) clearance late last month for its InVisionOS system that allows surgeons to plan their operations using virtual reality. 

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