Spinal News International’s top 10 most popular stories of November 2021


Research presented at the Global Spine Congress annual meeting (3–6 November 2021, Paris, France), a video on the effects of Covid-19 on spine care and a feature on the use of spinal cord stimulation to treat chronic pain are among the most-read stories from November.

1. Existing guidelines to change as research shows early surgical decompression following acute SCI improves neurological recovery

Surgical decompression within 24 hours of acute spinal cord injury (SCI) improves neurological recovery, and current guidelines on surgical management of SCI are being reviewed and updated as a result. These were the key messages to come out of a presentation by Michael Fehlings (University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada) which won Best Paper at the Global Spine Congress annual meeting (3–6 November 2021, Paris, France).

2. MedTech Insights: Covid-19 has “served as a catalyst” for a shift towards outpatient spine care

Carlton Weatherby (Memphis, USA), vice president and general manager of spine and biologics at Medtronic, talks to Spinal News International about his own early experiences within a healthcare setting and specifically his “early affinity” to the field of spine.

3. Neuroplast announces successful clinical Phase I trial with Neuro-Cells stem cell treatment for traumatic spinal cord injury

Dutch biotech company, Neuroplast, and the Hospital Nacional de Parapléjicos de Toledo in Spain have announced positive clinical Phase I results after analysis of ten patients suffering from traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI), with data demonstrating that its investigational stem cell treatment, Neuro-Cells, appears to be safe and well tolerated, without product-related adverse events.

4. Fewer surgical risks with robotic guidance than fluoroscopic guidance in adult MIS lumbar fusions, study finds

Robotic guidance (RG) is associated with a lower risk of both surgical complications and revision surgery when compared with fluoroscopic guidance (FG) in adult minimally invasive (MIS) lumbar fusions, a new study has found.

5. First dualPortal endscopic spine procedure performed

Amplify Surgical has announced the completion of the first endoscopic spine procedure using its dualPortal solution—a novel two-portal endoscopic approach that the company says allows surgeons to easily learn and perform a wider range of lumbar spine procedures than with the conventional one-portal technique.

6. Minimally invasive spine surgery associated with significantly lower incidence of dural tear in those with degenerative lumbar pathologies

Minimally invasive spine surgery results in a significantly lower incidence of dural tear and complications when compared to open surgery in patients with degenerative lumbar pathologies, new research suggests.

7. Early surgical decompression is recommended for patients with foot drop in lumbar degenerative diseases

Early surgical decompression after foot drop is beneficial in terms of recovery rate and neurological improvement when compared with late surgery. This is according to a new meta-analysis which also indicates that surgery within one month is recommended for patients with foot drop in lumbar degenerative diseases.

8. Long-term outcomes for minimally invasive TLIF in elderly patients are comparable to those in younger patient population

Elderly patients undergoing minimally invasive (MIS) transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) not only had similar perioperative outcomes compared to younger patients, but also achieved comparable improvements in pain, disability and quality of life that were sustained for up to five years, with no longer-term deterioration. These are the findings of a recent study which won the Best E-Poster award at the Global Spine Congress annual meeting (3–6 November 2021, Paris, France).

9. High-frequency SCS takes the stage to relieve chronic pain from diabetic neuropathy

Following the recent approval of the Senza system (Nevro) by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Erika A Petersen (Little Rock, USA) discusses the impact of the only spinal cord stimulation (SCS) device indicated to treat chronic pain associated with painful diabetic neuropathy (PDN) in the USA.

10. Cortical bone trajectory technique shows “remarkable superiority” compared with traditional trajectory for proximal facet joint protection

The use of the cortical bone trajectory (CBT) technique has not only shown similar intra-pedicular accuracy compared to traditional trajectory (TT) but also “remarkable superiority” in terms of proximal facet joint protection in transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) patients, new research suggests.


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