For Treating Kids with Severe Spinal Deformities, a Magnet Replaces the Scalpel
New York, NY – A 5-year-old boy diagnosed with early onset scoliosis, a severe curvature of the spine, is the first patient in the New York area to receive a novel treatment using magnetic technology to correct this condition and avoid the need for repetitive spine-lengthening surgeries.
An alternative to traditional growing rods, which require 8-10 repeated lengthening surgeries during a child's growing years, the MAGEC device allows surgeons to straighten and correct the spine gradually and noninvasively.
"The MAGEC (MAGnetic Expansion Control) device, which uses external magnets to control a rod implanted in the spine, is for children diagnosed with progressive early-onset scoliosis who have not benefited from nonsurgical treatments," says the boy's surgeon, Dr. Michael Vitale, associate director of the division of pediatric orthopedics and chief of the pediatric spine and scoliosis service at NewYork-Presbyterian/Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital and the Ana Lucia Professor of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery at Columbia University Medical Center, who performed the procedure in April.
Dr. Vitale expects this advance to improve outcomes in children with severe spinal deformities. "This new approach is designed to obviate the need for repeated trips to the operating room, as well as eliminate complications from infections and psychosocial effects of multiple surgeries." Continue>
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