RetinaLink Profile: Grieshaber Receives Prestigious Red Dot Award for FINESSE REFLEX Design

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Precision, quality and craftmanship, these are all words synonymous with the Grieshaber name. For over 100 years and five generations, these descriptors have also been the principles and passion behind the manufacturer of the finest handcrafted instruments for Ophthalmic surgery in the world. The fact that Grieshaber is located in Schaffhausen along with some of the finest watchmakers in the world comes as no surprise. This labor intense design and precision is a shared trait in both industries. Schaffhausen, Switzerland, is a quaint village in the northern part of Switzerland known as the “Green Region on the Rhine.” A must visit!

Grieshaber offices in Schaffhausen, Switzerland

Grieshaber’s instrumentation has evolved over the many decades, however in 2002 Grieshaber literally started a revolution when they designed and released, the Grieshaber REVOLUTION® reusable handle. The Revolution’s unique streamlined basket handle with 360° fingertip actuation was the predecessor for Grieshaber’s next groundbreaking design: The REVOLUTION DSP. This unique hand instrument offered all the benefits of REVOLUTION handle in a disposable offering. Alcon introduced the REVOLUTION DSP into its vitreoretinal product line in 2003.

Grieshaber REVOLUTION (2002)








Grieshaber REVOLUTION DSP (2003)

The success of Grieshaber’s REVOLUTION DSP products provided steady growth for several years. This growth led to increased demand prompting Grieshaber, driven by its commitment to quality, to enhance their manufacturing effort. They did so by building a new “state of the art” production facility and increased their Research & Development team from seven to 20 Associates.

On June 20th of his year, Grieshaber was awarded the prestigious Red Dot Award for Product Design for their new ergonomically designed FINESSE® REFLEX™ handle. The Red Dot Award, which dates back to 1955, is a competition that seeks out outstanding design achievements and product innovations.

The Red Dot Jury evaluates these innovations individually from every industry. It is not a competition but rather a “talent hunt” of all that is innovative in different manufacturing fields. The “best of the best” in design and innovation. The Red Dot Jury is comprised of 50 judges from 23 countries around the world who review multiple categories including: furniture, tools, mobile phones, automobiles, medical devices, and many more. They test, discuss and evaluate each entry individually. One winner is selected in each category and over 50,000 applications are submitted yearly. This is truly an outstanding accomplishment. The statement from the Red Dot Jury regarding the FINESSE REFLEX stated “The special design of the Finesse Reflex Handle is ergonomically and functionally sophisticated: it gives the micro instrument the optimum twist.

Red Dot Jury evaluating products 

Congratulations to the Grieshaber Research & Development team for this prestigious award. A tribute not only to their legacy but also to their continued commitment to advancing the field of vitreous surgery.

Grieshaber Research & Development Team

What makes this product different from the rest?
The FINESSE REFLEX provides for more maneuverability during surgery. The indentation notch in the actuation basket improves feel, requires 24% less actuation force and allows 360° rotational actuation which enables more precision and control. The reduction in handle size provides improved ergonomics as well as accommodates smaller surgeon hands and minimizes microscope interference. This design allows surgeons more straightforward access to the retina in all patients and specifically in myopic patients. The DSP tip stiffness was improved in both 25+ and 27+ gauge configurations. The 25+ gauge shaft is 14% stiffer and 27+ gauge is 34% stiffer. Less bending means more control during surgery.


Grieshaber Director of Research & Development, Niels Abt, said “The FINESSE REFLEX design process was elaborate. Over 150 surgeons evaluated the design, provided their impressions for this hand held instrument which allowed our Engineers to fine tune the final design and ultimately, honed it to perfection. The rigor in product design speaks for itself as 70% of surgeons prefer the ergonomics of the FINESSE REFLEX!”

Alcon launched both 25+ and 27+ small gauge configurations for the SHARKSKIN ILM Forceps MAXGRIP® and End-Grasping Forceps. Additional products will launch during the second half of 2022. They include ILM, Serrated and Asymmetrical Forceps and Scissors.

FINESSE REFLEX 23, 25+ and 27+ 

To learn more about Alcon’s vitreoretinal product portfolio and Grieshaber FINESSE REFLEX, visit or contact your local Alcon Vitreoretinal Manager.

* References:
Alcon Data on File, 2010, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2020