Spinal News International’s top 10 most popular stories of February 2022


Anterior lumbar interbody fusion versus transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion for treating those with isthmic spondylolisthesis was our top story in February, closely followed by further new research, this time on how effective full-endoscopic transforaminal discectomy is as an alternative to open microdiscectomy in treating patients with sciatica. There was also some interesting device-related industry news from AxioMed, Implanet, Empirical Spine, Cerapedics and Nevro.

1. ALIF offers superior outcomes to TLIF for the treatment of L5-S1 isthmic spondylolisthesis

Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) generates greater segmental lordosis, regional lordosis, and restoration of disc height compared to transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) when treating isthmic spondylolisthesis. This is according to new research published in the journal Spine by Andrew Simpson (Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, USA) et al.

2. Full-endoscopic transforaminal discectomy is “an effective alternative” to open microdiscectomy in treating sciatica

Percutaneous transforaminal endoscopic discectomy (PTED) can be considered as an effective alternative to open microdiscectomy in treating sciatica. This is the key finding from new research published in the British Medical Journal by Pravesh Gadjradj (Weill Cornell, Brain and Spine Centre, New York, USA) et al.

3. AxioMed closes in on FDA approval of its lumbar viscoelastic total disc replacement

AxioMed has moved closer towards achieving US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of its lumbar viscoelastic total disc replacement after submitting PMA Module II to the regulatory body.

4. Meta-analysis highlights benefits of reducing endotracheal tube cuff pressure following retractor placement in anterior cervical fusion surgery

Reducing endotracheal tube cuff pressure (ETTCP) following retractor placement in anterior cervical fusion surgery may be a protective measure to decrease the severity of dysphagia and the odds of developing recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy (RLNP) or dysphonia, according to a recent meta-analysis—the findings of which were published in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine by Saikiran Murthy (Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, New York, USA) et al.

5. First surgical procedures performed in the USA with the Jazz PF tethering implant

Implanet has announced that the first surgeries have been conducted in the USA with its Jazz PF tethering implant.

6. Empirical Spine inches closer to LimiFlex US launch

Empirical Spine has recently achieved a number of clinical, reimbursement and regulatory milestones in the past 12 months that have helped move its LimiFlex Dynamic Sagittal Tether (DST) closer to market in the US.

7. No proven benefit of non-invasive electrical stimulation as adjunct to fusion

Non-invasive electrical stimulation as an adjunct to fusion does not appear to offer any meaningful increase in fusion rate, although further and better quality research is needed. This is according to findings of a meta-analysis which were recently published by Abhijith Matur (University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, USA) et al in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine.

8. Cerapedics completes enrolment of pivotal IDE study for P-15L bone graft

Cerapedics has announced that it has completed enrolment of the ASPIRE study—a pivotal US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigational device exemption (IDE) study—which will evaluate the safety and efficacy of P-15L bone graft for use in transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) surgery in patients with degenerative disc disease (DDD).

9. Research outlines transfusion guidelines for adult spine surgery

For adult spine surgery patients, red blood cell transfusion should be avoided if haemoglobin (Hb) numbers remain above 9g/dl in the intraoperative period and 8g/dl in the direct postoperative period. This is according to recent research, published by Umaru Barrie (University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, USA) et al in The Spine Journal.

10. Nevro announces publication of 12-month data on high-frequency SCS for non-surgical refractory back pain

Nevro Corporation has announced online publication of 12-month data from the SENZA-NSRBP randomised controlled trial (RCT) in Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine. These data show that high-frequency 10kHz spinal cord stimulation (SCS) therapy results in profound improvements in non-surgical refractory back pain (NSRBP) compared to conventional medical management (CMM), a company press release states.


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