RTI Surgical announces HealthPartners’ positive coverage decision for minimally invasive sacroiliac joint fusion surgery


RTI Surgical has announced that HealthPartners, the largest consumer governed non-profit healthcare organisation in the USA, issued a positive coverage decision for minimally invasive sacroiliac (SI) joint fusion surgery, effective 1 November, 2018.

This decision expands access to RTI’s SImmetry System for HealthPartners members considering treatment for SI joint pain or dysfunction. The SImmetry System is a minimally invasive surgical solution that uses proprietary decortication technology, bone graft and threaded fixation to facilitate bone fusion, providing an opportunity for long-term pain relief.

It has been reported that up to 30% of all chronic low back pain, the second most common cause of disability in American adults, is due to SI joint dysfunction. SI joint fusion surgery using the SImmetry System is designed to stabilise the dysfunctional SI joint by fusing the sacrum and the pelvic bone together.

“As a surgeon in the HealthPartners network who has experience using the SImmetry System, this positive coverage decision is a win for patients suffering from SI joint dysfunction,” said Edward Santos, a spine surgeon specialising in neck, back, cervical, thoracic and lumbar spinal disorders, and minimally invasive surgery at Summit Orthopedics in Minneapolis, USA. “The SImmetry System is a minimally invasive surgical solution that promotes SI joint fusion through decortication, with a growing body of clinical evidence showing improvements in pain, disability and opioid use for SI joint patients.”

“RTI is encouraged by HealthPartners’ decision, which expands access to the SImmetry System for patients with SI joint pain or dysfunction,” said Camille Farhat, president and CEO, RTI Surgical. “The SImmetry System is supported by a growing body of evidence suggesting long-term pain relief for these patients. We are committed to advancing clinical data for the SImmetry System to aid in further payor decisions.”

The ongoing Evolusion clinical study is evaluating the impact of SImmetry on SI joint fusion and pain reduction in 250 patients across 23 sites. An early analysis of the first 50 patients published in December 2017 showed a 54% reduction in SI joint pain at six months, as well as a 55% reduction in opioid use. A separate CT fusion study on the SImmetry System demonstrated a 73% reduction in average pain over 24 months. Clinical outcomes from 100 patients presented at the International Society for the Advancement of Spine Surgery (ISASS) 2018 Annual Meeting showed the SImmetry System provided a 56% reduction in patient-reported pain, and a statistically significant reduction in the use of opioids and other pain medications at six months.


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