Medtronic unveils new minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery

Medtronic today introduced a new approach to minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery that the company says allows the procedure to be performed through smaller incisions in the middle lower back.

The MIDLF system is the latest in a series of procedural solutions in the medical device maker’s MAST portfolio for minimally invasive treatment of spinal conditions. Using retractors and bone screws, along with Medtronic’s surgical navigation and imaging systems, the procedure allows for more accurate device placement, smaller incisions, and minimal injury to muscles, tendons and other tissues not involved in the back injury, the company said in a statement.

“A midline approach offers surgeons a number of benefits in addressing the challenges associated with decompression as well as sacral fixation in the lumbar or lower spine,” said Florida spine surgeon Dr. Richard Hynes in a prepared statement.

Despite declining sales and controversy around the Infuse bone growth product, Medtronic Spine won’t be for sale any time soon, CEO Omark Ishrak said recently. Things may be looking up, as the spinal division recently launched a new spinal surgery product in Europe, won FDA approval for its TSRH Spinal System, which treats pediatric and adolescent scoliosis, and rolled out a new product for oral surgeries in September.

The MAST MIDLF was presented at the 26th annual meeting of the North American Spine Society in Chicago.

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