Overview of Spinal Implants & Its Groups

Spinal Implants

While most spinal conditions don’t require surgery, there are times when surgery is considered the best option. Spinal Implants systems utilizing specially designed spinal instrumentation are used in these surgical procedures.

The Spinal Implants are used to correct deformities, facilitate fusion, and stabilize and strengthen the spine. Siora Surgicals is one of the top trauma implant manufacturers in India.

Conditions that usually require instrumented fusion surgery include slippage of the spine (spondylolisthesis), traumatic fracture, chronic degenerative disc disease, and other forms of spinal instability, including scoliosis.

What are Spinal Implants?

What are Spinal Implants

Most spinal implants are made of metals such as titanium alloy, titanium, or stainless steel; some may be non-metallic compounds. They are available in several sizes and shapes to accommodate patients of all ages and different anatomy.

Surgeons and scientists worldwide are constantly working to develop and refine implants to improve patient comfort and safety.

There have been great advances in recent years, including the advent of the hook, rod, and screw systems that enable surgeons to correct spinal deformities three-dimensionally and develop special cages and bone plates that help promote spinal fusion; and the creation of small but strong implants for children.

Spinal implants can be summarized in many groups

Spinal implants can be summarized

#1. Rods

The Rods are one of the unique implants used in the spine. Rods are used, along with screws and hooks, to immobilize and contour the spine into correct alignment.

The rods are strong yet have some flexibility so that the surgeon can shape the rod to match the contours of the patient’s spine.

#2. Pedicle screws

These specially designed bone screws are carefully implanted into the pedicles of the spinal vertebrae.

They have traditionally been used in the lumbar spine, and with recent advances in technique and technology, surgeons are now using them in the thoracic spine.

Screws provide strong points of “Anchorage” to which rods can be attached. Rods can then be contoured to facilitate fusion and correct deformities.

#3. Hooks

Hooks are used with rods and other orthopedic implants to anchor them to vertebrae.

#4. Plates

Plates are often used in the cervical spine. Dishes are made to conform to the spine’s contour and are held in place by screws set into adjacent vertebrae.

When the plate needs adjustment, a contouring tool is used to customize the patient’s anatomy.

#5. Cages

Cages are usually called interbody cages because they are often placed between two vertebrae. Cages are small hollow devices with perforated walls.

Bone graft or BMP is usually packed into the cage to promote bone growth between the adjacent vertebrae.

Cages are used to restore lost disc height resulting from a collapsed disc and release pressure on nerve roots.

What we Use for Spinal Implants

We carefully choose orthopedic implants (implants orthopedics) to ensure they are the best choice for the specific patient. For example, we select “low profile” implants for slim patients, not visible through the skin.

We also use “low volume” implants because they cause less post-operative pain and reduce muscle irritation. Moreover, we tend to use titanium implants, which, unlike stainless steel, are light, strong, and can be used with MRIs.

Finally, we use radiolucent materials such as carbon fiber cages when appropriate. Carbon-fiber implants can’t be seen on a scan but allow us to see if the bone is forming and fusion occurs.

The Future of Spinal Implants

Now, scientists are developing bio-resorbable implants. Like other implants, these are used to facilitate fusion. However, after a year or so (when fusion should be done), most implants are no longer required but are left in the body.

Bioresorbable implants are designed to break down when they meet water (such as in the body). Most reduce in size by 50% in a year and are completely gone in 2-3 years.

Therefore, the implant is present in the body while it is required to promote fusion, and then it simply “fades away” over a 12 to 36-month period.

While few bio-resorbable implants are available yet, it is hoped that their advancement will be a significant step forward in the coming few years.

Conclusion

In the last 20 years, there have been breakthroughs in the development of spinal implants. The result is better treatment for patients.

Spinal Implants Procedure | Ed’s Story [YouTube Video]

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