Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Artificial disc available to more patients as spine institute takes study to next phase

15.01.2003

An artificial disc being studied as a replacement for damaged discs of the spine has been approved to move into Phase II trials, making it available to more patients, according to John J. Regan, M.D., director of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Institute for Spinal Disorders.

A recently completed Phase I study compared the prosthesis to traditional fusion. In that phase, patients were randomized, with one having a fusion operation for every two that received the artificial disc. Now all patients who qualify to participate in the study will receive the artificial disc.

A healthy disc is a complex structure between the bones of the spine. The nucleus, sandwiched in the center of the disc, contains fluid that serves as a cushion. Layered collagen fibers of the adjacent annulus provide strength. When the components work together, they give the back both stability and flexibility. But when a disc is damaged, the cushion can deflate, bulge or leak, and the collagen loses its elasticity.

Pain is often intense, especially when nerves get caught between degenerating components. To relieve the pain and strengthen the spine, surgeons sometimes remove a disc or place a bone graft in the spine to fuse two bones together and stop the grinding, crunching action in between. While fusion may relieve the pain, it prevents natural, independent motion.

“If something is going to move and one disc is not moving, motion at the discs next to it will increase,” said Dr. Regan. “The major benefit that the artificial disc appears to offer is that motion remains at the disc, which does not put additional stress on adjacent discs.”

Dr. Regan, who at Cedars-Sinai directs the largest multidisciplinary spine center in the western United States, said surgeons inserting the artificial disc enter through the abdomen, just below the navel, sparing the large muscles of the back. The operation usually takes about an hour and a half, which is less than fusion surgery because it does not require bone grafting. Also, while patients who undergo fusion surgery need to restrict their motion for up to a year, those who receive artificial discs are usually able to be mobile right away.

“Fusion is a very good operation for many people, helping them quite a bit in terms of relieving pain,” said Dr. Regan. “But one of the concerns we have with fusion is that long-term, people often come back with problems at the next disc, and they may need another operation. The artificial disc may prove to be a viable alternative, especially for younger, active patients.”

The Food and Drug Administration will use the results of the current studies to decide whether to approve the device for general use throughout the United States. It was previously approved in Europe.

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center is one of the largest nonprofit academic medical centers in the Western United States. For the fifth straight two-year period, it has been named Southern California’s gold standard in health care in an independent survey. Cedars-Sinai is internationally renowned for its diagnostic and treatment capabilities and its broad spectrum of programs and services, as well as breakthrough in biomedical research and superlative medical education. Named one of the 100 "Most Wired" hospitals in health care in 2001, the Medical Center ranks among the top 10 non-university hospitals in the nation for its research activities.

Sandra Van | Van Communications

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>