Surgeon-driven innovation in spine surgery: TranS1 CEO on 2 new innovations & what the future holds

Written by Laura Dyrda | November 03, 2016 | Print  |

TranS1 launched the Capital Bone Graft Harvester and Pylon Graft Delivery systems at the North American Spine Society Annual Meeting.

The Capital Bone Graft Harvester is designed for reproducible autograft material harvesting from the iliac crest. The technology has shaft fenestration to facilitate bone drilling and extracts the graft dowel while shielding the surrounding tissue.


The Pylon Graft Delivery is designed for posterolateral fixation. Surgeons can place the graft along the transverse processes. The Pylon deposits bone graft material through the same incision as the posterior fixation and can be used in conjunction with posterior fixation, interbody fusion and laminectomy.


Jeff Schell, president CEO of TranS1, discusses the new technology and the company's mission for the future.


Q: What makes the Capital Bone Graft Harvester and the Pylon Bone Graft Delivery systems unique in the spine space? What gaps do they fill?


Jeff Schell: The products were developed in consultation with surgeons and in response to surgeon needs. In the case of Capital, the system was developed in response to the recognition of surgeons who need to build the bridge between the lateral masses and spinous processes.


Surgeons expressed to us they needed an alternative to the open procedure where they cut into the back and filet down the lateral masses and place the bone graft. That's not an ideal scenario for a surgeon. We were tasked with a need to create a solution for that challenge, which is how we arrived at this concept.


The minimally invasive nature of the system we developed replaces the need to filet through multiple layers of soft tissue. For an MIS surgeon, typically MIS surgery has advantages over open surgery. The advantage is for patients because the less invasive procedure leads to better overall outcomes.


Q: How will your surgeon innovators affect the company going forward?


JS: We have greatly expanded the number of surgeons we are supporting in terms of their use of our products or collaborating with us to develop new products. The increase in surgeon relationships and partnerships bodes well for the future of our company.


Q: How do you move forward with your surgeon-led mission? What do you expect for 2017?


JS: We have been able to leverage our core products and bring new products to the market through our partnerships with physicians. We have 16 products in our pipeline currently in response to surgeons who identified challenges in the surgical process. I'm excited for 2017 where I expect there will be other products conceived as well.


Q: When you travel around to speak with surgeons, what types of issues are they facing? Do you see any trends within their challenges?


JS: The general feedback I hear from surgeons is that other products and technologies risk impacting the soft tissues surrounding the spine. One of the sub-themes of our surgeon-led innovation goal is to advance products that minimize tissue trauma and maximize the chance for good patient outcomes. It's a consistent theme and one we set up to achieve in creating our company and I think we are on the right track to accomplish that mission.


Q: Healthcare is moving toward value-based care. How do TranS1 technologies, including AxiaLIF, fit in?


JS: Value-based care is very much on our mind and at the forefront of our efforts. AxiaLIF shows a 94 percent fusion rate and the efficiency of the procedure is well-demonstrated. Then once you solve the quality aspect of the surgery, then comes the cost. AxiaLIF has shown to substantially reduce the cost of care and can offer more than $3,500 per procedure for the healthcare system.


AxiaLIF is highly effective and saves significantly on cost, especially when you consider the potential to replace the traditional procedures. We focus on MIS spine, which has advantages to save cost and reduce tissue damage.


More articles on spine surgery:
7 spine surgeon & neurosurgeon moves in October 2016
5 things to know about cervical myelopathy spine surgery cost effectiveness
NASS names Dr. F. Todd Wetzel president

© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2019. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies here.

Top 40 Articles from the Past 6 Months