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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32890

Title: The Design and Testing of a Less Invasive Dual Plate System for Posterior Spinal Fusion
Authors: Singh, Devin
Advisor: Whyne, Cari
Ginsberg, Howard
Department: Biomedical Engineering
Keywords: Spinal Fusion
medical devices
Issue Date: 31-Aug-2012
Abstract: Spinal fusion is the process by which two or more vertebral levels are joined into a single, solid bone mass in order to restore stability to a spine that has been compromised by trauma, degeneracy or metastasis. Fusion is accomplished through internal hardware positioned anteriorly, posteriorly, or with combined anterior-posterior instrumentation. Since the 1990s the frequency of spinal fusions has been rising, and this trend is expected to continue. Posterior approaches to fusion are most common, primarily consisting of pedicle screw and rod constructs. Despite the high success rate for bony fusion with pedicle screw fixation, this technique poses risks to delicate neurological and vascular structures and is heavily dependent on surgeon expertise. In this thesis, a novel and less invasive posterior spinal hardware system was designed and evaluated, which solely utilizes the spinous processes and laminae of the vertebrae as the point of the bone-implant interface. Morphological and biomechanical studies of the posterior spine were undertaken in order to define important geometric information to guide the design of the proposed hardware and to determine the strength of the posterior elements throughout the spine to assess their ability to support posterior element plating. Utilizing this information, a modular dual plate fusion system was developed for single or multi-level fusion. The system accounts for the native curvature of the spine and can be extended to additional vertebral levels at the time of insertion, or at any later time. Prototypes were manufactured in titanium. Positive biomechanical results were found when the proposed hardware was used as a supplement to anterior instrumentation. Additionally, work focused on 2D-3D registration of neutral CT data with flexion extension x-ray images, was undertaken and shown to yield improved accuracy of important vertebral metrics utilized for clinical assessment of spine stability. This technique is applicable to the evaluation of pathology and kinematics at any level of the spine, including post-fusion adjacent level degeneration. The culmination of this work has resulted in a novel, patent pending posterior element spinal fusion system.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32890
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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