Alphatec Spine has announced the launch of its BridgePoint Spinous Process Fixation System which is designed to enable spine surgeons to immobilise and stabilise spinal segments without the need for pedicle screw and rod constructs. This minimally invasive surgery (MIS) system is intended to be an adjunct to fusion of the thoracic and lumbar spine to treat disorders resulting from degenerative disc disease, spondylolisthesis, tumor and trauma.
BridgePoint is designed to be implanted through a relatively small posterior incision of approximately 5cm in length, which should result in less injury to muscle and tissue and less blood loss than occurs with the implantation of traditional pedicle screw and rod systems through a non-MIS approach.
The BridgePoint System incorporates telescoping plates that allow surgeons to compress or distract the spinous processes before immobilising the spinal segment. The device’s large contact area provides a strong anchor point to each spinous process, facilitating compression or distraction and optimal stability during the fusion process. BridgePoint can be used as an adjunct to interbody fusion or posterior fusion with decompression treatment. The large bone graft window allows surgeons to pack additional bone graft between the spinous processes.
BridgePoint’s first implantation case was conducted in August 2012 at Cheyenne Regional Medical Center in Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA, by Steven Beer, a board certified neurological surgeon.
“I recently had a patient with degenerative disc disease and spinal stenosis, and BridgePoint offered a way for me to treat her less invasively,” said Beer. “BridgePoint allows me to fixate the spine more efficiently than competitive systems and the device makes surgery safer and faster. At the same time, it provides an environment rich in characteristics necessary for fusion of the spine. BridgePoint will definitely be a product I offer my patients in the future.”