Medical Video ProductionMedical Video Production

Case Study: LivaNova XTRA ATS Video-Based eLearning Platform

The LivaNova XTRA ATS eLearning platform uses video, animation, and synchronized texts to instruct, test,  and certify clinicians on the use of XTRA autotransfusion system.




LivaNova is the creator of the XTRA ATS, the most advanced autotransfusion system available today. The XTRA ATS facilitates autologous blood transfusions in which a patient's own blood is used instead of relying upon donor blood, avoiding a wide range of donor tissue-related complications. The XTRA is used for both intraoperative blood recovery and preoperative sequestration, and features numerous options for handling the blood and its constituent components of red blood cells, fat, platelets, and plasma. LivaNova expends a substantial portion of labor on educating their customers on the use of the XTRA system, and wanted a way to standardize this training while reducing costs associated with in-person instruction. Having reviewed its prior work in video-based eLearning, they came to DDA understanding the advanced design and development they could expect.


The eLearning platform would be comprised of over an hour of original video shot in DDA's professional studios. Voice-over narration would accompany each explaining how to set up the equipment with its disposable accessories and operate the machine to achieve specific outcomes. The eLearning course would also include a testing and certification mechanism to ensure that trainees could demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the XTRA setup and operation procedures. An administrative area would allow LivaNova to govern access to the platform with registration codes that expired at a set date and could be limited to each individual user to prevent unauthorized access. Global metrics would be included to grant insight on trainee performance, including which topics were most challenging to learners. The platform itself would be based on a new, custom responsive web design that would match existing branding guidelines while optimally presenting on tablets, desktops, and laptops, with the video screen area maximized for easy visibility, and automatic progression allowing for a seamless learning experience.


DDA started by creating a project development center housing all the reference materials, planning documents, and creative media used to design and develop the interactive eLearning platform. DDA received the initial scripts for the eLearning course from the client and refined to ensure clarity in the accompanying narration. DDA's first focus was on developing a whiteboard animation that showed how the XTRA ATS was used in intraoperative blood recovery in a step-by-step fashion, showing a circuit of components that demonstrate each phase of blood processing. The client supplied the initial script for this animation, which was storyboarded to ensure that the flow of visuals would meet the client's expectations for clearly communicating the functioning of the XTRA ATS. Particular care was paid to demonstrating how the centrifuge works to separate the blood into constituent components, with supernatant rising towards the top of the bowl and being pushed out by the concentrated red blood cells from underneath out into a waste bag.

DDA then received the scripts for the live action video content of the eLearning platform, and storyboarded each individual video segment from which each section of each module was composed, indicating how each shot would correspond to the spoken narration. DDA also developed slightly simplified language for accompanying side textual content that would add an additional layer to the eLearning experience. As the video progressed, the side content text highlighted to correspond to the specific topic indicated by the voice-over narration and video, creating a synchronized video with text presentation for the eLearning course. Additional visual aids composed of still images of the machine, its parts, and its accessories, along with graphs and other materials, were created to further clarify specific topics. DDA worked with the client to find the perfect voice-over talent, and recorded the narration in its own studios.

DDA did some initial rotating shots of specific pieces of the equipment, such as the XVAC vacuum module, for use in the course. LivaNova sent an employee who specialized in explaining the functioning of the XTRA ATS to demonstrate machine operation for the video recording sessions. DDA shot all video in its own professional video studios, with the client's project lead monitoring throughout to ensure the highest quality and clarity in the end result. Bovine blood was used for demonstration purposes, and the video was shot on a white background to keep the focus firmly on the XTRA ATS machine. DDA then edited the videos to correspond to the recorded narration, adding graphs and stills to the live-action video where needed, along with the synchronized content. DDA's professional video editors added visual highlights to point out specific components to the equipment that were pertinent to that section of the eLearning course. DDA also accelerated some of the blood processing video to give viewers a quick understanding of what they can expect to see when the blood is moved from the reservoir into the centrifuge for processing, and is then separated into red blood cells and other blood components.

DDA developed a testing area that randomly drew 15 questions from a pool of about 30 to give learners unique testing experiences from each other and when retaking the test if they had initially failed. When users fail the test, they are given links to specific sections of course content to review to better understand that topic. A dashboard shows the bowl used for blood used as the design motif for an animated progress tracker, which fills up to the level that indicates the percentage of the course the learner had completed. A Quick Start video is accessible from the dashboard for those users who want to digest only the most basic information for the fastest way to get up and running with the XTRA ATS. There is also a View All Videos feature that allows the user to find all video clips broken down by module, section, and clip title so they can find the exact content they need, when they need it.



The platform was launched in March of 2019 and has been enthusiastically received. Additional functionality and content are being added, and LivaNova is committed to making the XTRA eLearning platform the center of their customer education program. Initially built for the US audience, LivaNova has already begun to promote the platform worldwide, and is considering additional developments to target non-Anglophone learners.