During the past week there have been a few big announcements from heavy hitters in the orthopaedics space. Most notable is Stryker’s appointment of David Floyd (most recently the CEO of OrthoWorx) as group president of its orthopaedics business.
Wright Medical, which has been through a host of changes over the past year or so, has named a new executive vice president and COO. Pascal Girin will be handling Wright Medical’s extremities, orthopedic reconstruction, and international business on a global scale, along with overseeing the company’s clinical, regulatory, and quality tasks.
Finally, ConforMIS has brought on former Genzyme Corp. veteran Peter Traynor as CFO. The company also just relocated its headquarters to Bedford, MA (the company is keeping its existing facility in Burlington, MA) as part of a broader commercialization strategy. The new space quadruples the company’s total square footage and could bring in more than 100 new jobs over...
LDR became the first company to receive an approvable letter from FDA for its cervical disc. The milestone followed a 600-patient concurrent IDE clinical trial for both one- and two-level cervical disc replacement. The company hopes that the Mobi-C device will be commercially available in the United States in 2013.
To learn about the device, MD+DI editor-at-large Brian Buntz spoke with the company's vice president of U.S. marketing, Joe Ross. In the interview, Ross notes that there are an estimated 250,000–275,000 anterior surgical procedures performed each year in the United States. Cervical disc replacement could potentially be used in up to 40% of these patients.
Johnson & Johnson canceled a meeting to discuss its medical device and diagnostic business with investors tomorrow due to Hurricane Sandy, the massive storm that has wreaked havoc on the East Coast.
The event was expected to focus on the effect last year's $21.3-billion acquisition of Synthes, a maker of orthopaedic trauma devices, has had on the company's business, according to Philly.com.
"The company made the postponement decision to ensure the safety of its employees and expected attendees in the aftermath of the storm," the company said in a statement.
The meeting, which was to take place in New Brunswick, NJ, will be rescheduled for early 2013, according to a press release.
How has Hurricane Sandy affected your business?
Two joint studies by The Reno OrthopaedicClinic and the University of Nevada School of Medicine have found that generic implants can deliver the same quality outcomes as conventional implants while also saving costs. The results, presented October 4 at the 28th Annual Orthopaedic Trauma Association (OTA) Meeting, utilized generic screws from The Orthopaedic Implant Company (OIC) and examined the costs, implementation, and clinical outcomes of a cost-containment program at Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno, NV. The screws were generic equivalent 7.3 mm cannulated sacroiliac and femoral neck screws used in orthopaedic trauma procedures. The results showed that the generic 7.3 mm cannulated screws made by OIC performed as well as conventional screws for the fixation of femoral neck fractures and posterior pelvic ring injuries without affecting patient care, quality, or outcomes.
One study examining operative time, estimated blood loss, complication rate, shortening,...
Ouch. And yes, there is a correlation between patients with larger thighs and hip failure, according to a study conducted by the University of Iowa (UI). Although you might think this is an obvious conclusion, it isn’t. Although weight bearing puts stress on the hip (and any other joint, for that matter), dislocation generally occurs as a result of excessive range of motion. But such an action, as you might imagine, is more difficult for an obese patient to perform.
So a UI grad student decided to dig further to find out exactly why clinical studies have found that the risk for dislocation is higher among the obese. The student, Jacob Elkins, created a computation model that allowed his team to assess the movement of patients of many sizes and thus implants of many difference sizes.
The team found that patients with a BMI of 40 or higher have a greater risk of dislocation due to thigh soft tissue impingement. Other findings were that implants that had a larger femoral head...
At this year's Olympics in London, South African sprinter Oscar Pistorius made history as the first double amputee to compete against able-bodied atheletes in the games. Pistorius made it to the semifinals in the 400 m and to the finals, along with his team, in the 4 x 400 m relay races running on a pair of Össur's Flex-Foot Cheetah carbon-fiber prosthetic legs.
His participation set off an international debate over whether he had an unfair advantage over "natural" runners. In other words, the whole world was arguing about whether Össur's prosthetic legs were better than the real things—not a bad problem to have if you're an orthopaedics maker.
Check out this story over on our sister site MD+DI that explains how, through savvy marketing, Össur was able to make the most out of its Olympic opportunity.
Do you have a great idea for the development of an orthopaedic device? Are you looking for international industrial partners or funding?
Get your five minutes to convince investors by participating in the OrthoTec Investment Hub, which is taking place September 12 and 13 at OrthoTec Europe in Zurich. All you need to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org to request your participation form. The deadline for submissions is August 15.
The goal of the OrthoTec Investment Hub is to create partnerships between patent holders, industrial, international investors, and suppliers at an earlier stage in the innovation process. Eighteen projects will be selected. If chosen, you'll have the opportunity to present to a panel of orthopaedic professionals and investors at OrthoTec Europe during two half-days of "5 Minutes to Convince" and networking sessions.
Here's a snapshot of who will be there:
Industrial OEM manufacturers of orthopaedic implants looking for technologies through licensing...
To get an idea of what the U.S. public thinks an orthopaedic surgeon should receive for hip and knee replacement procedures, a group of researchers surveyed 1120 patients, asking them to come up with estimates.
Based on the study, titled "Patient Perception of Physician Reimbursement in Elective Total Hip and Knee Arthroplasty," patients guessed that surgeons should get paid an average of $14,358 for total hip replacements and $13,332 for total knee replacements.
As the headline points out, those estimates were way off compared to what these clinicians actually receive from Medicare. On average, surgeons receive $1378 for total hip arthroplasty and $1430 for a total knee arthroplasty from Medicare.
In recent years, there has been a trend towards gradual Medicare physician reimbursement while the cost of physicians' operating expenses and the cost of living has risen. In light of this, a number of joint arthroplasty surgeons are opting out of Medicare although the...
Image courtesy of THE SARTORIALIST
Of course, the No. 1 requirement for a prosthetic device is functionality, but how does fashion factor into the design equation?
This question came to mind after I saw a photo (right) of a woman with a prosthetic leg riding a bike on street style blog The Sartorialist. The prosthetic's design was a hit with the site's fashion-forward readership. Take, for example, these comments:
Beside her overall beauty, this golden leg has amazing colour and style—looks like a right accesory for a cyclist!
Awesome outfit, great shoes, fabulous back, gorgeous not-meddled-with hair, love the legwork!
For those of you who develop devices that are meant to be seen, is fashion a consideration in your designs? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
—Jamie Hartford is the associate editor of MD+DI. Follow her on Twitter @readMED.
Generation Y (also known as Millennials, among other things) are a rising force in the U.S. workforce—although it is a bit tricky to pin down just who belongs the generation as no precise cutoffs for birthdates exist to define it.
Nevertheless, the younger generation will shape the future of orthopedic medicine and their uniquely achievement-oriented and family-centric qualities are worth considering, explained Les Jebson, executive director of the University of Florida & Shands Healthcare System at the Becker’s Hospital Review annual meeting in Chicago on May 18.
While orthopedic surgeons have traditionally been an independent lot, the younger generation of orthopedic surgeons is more tolerant of the prospect of hospital employment—perhaps out of necessity. “About 25 percent of all orthopedic doctors are now hospital employed,” Jebson explained in Becker’s Hospital Review.
Gen Y surgeons eschewing hospital employment seek to obtain...
Dr. Darja Marolt
A study recently published in the online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
has shown that human embryonic stem cells can be used to grow bone tissue grafts for potential research and therapeutic applications. Dr. Darja Marolt of The New York Stem Cell Foundation implanted bone progenirots derived from human embryonic stems cells into mice. Over time the implanted bone tissue continued to develop into normal bone structure without any incidence of tumor growth.
The research marks a significant step toward using stem cells in therapies to repair or replace bone tissue. Patients who have suffered traumatic injuries (including wounded soldiers) and patients with birth defects could all potentially benefit from this treatment.
Warsaw Orthopaedics Companies Generate $11 Billion
Fact: 43% of the workforce in Kosciusko County is employed in the orthopaedic device manufacturing industry. --Brad Bishop, executive director of OrthoWorx
Last week I went on a media tour of Northeast Indiana, where I traveled from Fort Wayne to South Bend, visiting established companies as well as start-ups in the industry. To outsiders, Indiana is most well known for its focus on orthopaedic device manufacturing in Warsaw, which is clearly alive and well. However, Northeast Indiana (comprised of 10 counties that do not include Kosciusko County, where Warsaw is located) is also home to a medical device manufacturing community of more than 40 companies that are responsible for creating 2600+ jobs, according to the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership. Within the region, employment in the medical equipment and supplies category has more than doubled—growing 135%—in the past ten years.