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Device for minimally invasive spine surgery


OHSU # 1807


Technology Summary

Device for minimally invasive spinal surgery

Oregon Health & Science University

Technology Summary:

Device for minimally invasive spinal surgery: a bioresorbable clip and applicator to replace traditional sutures.

Value Proposition

Closure of the dura by traditional suturing is a tedious and time consuming process, becoming more difficult with advancements in minimally invasive procedures. Bioresorbable, radiolucent clips applied with a specialized applicator provide a watertight closure saving at least 10 minutes of surgeon time and cost to the patient.

Executive Summary

Problem: Surgical tissue closures, especially those of the dura (covering of spine and brain), are becoming more time consuming and difficult with the advancement of minimally invasive procedures due to tight, narrow corridors accessing the surgical site.

Solution: Dr. Neil Roundy, a neurologic surgeon, identified a need in spinal surgery and designed a system comprising a small, bioabsorbable, radiolucent (does not obscure MRI, CT) clip and applicator slender enough to fit down the narrow corridor without obstructing surgeon visualization to provide a watertight closure of the dura. The device comprises surgical staples and an applicator to perform rapid tissue closure in either minimally invasive procedures or traditional open surgeries. An applicator is used to deliver the staples down a small opening. The staples are loaded into a chamber on the applicator. When force is applied, the staple opens. Upon release, the staple grasps the sides of the tissue to be repaired and closes the staple so that tissue edges are everted for decreased risk of adhesion to underlying tissues.

Market size

Approximately 1.2 million spine surgeries are performed annually with a mean durotomy incidence of approximately 3.5% reported in the literature. Dura closure using sutures can consume up to 1 hour of surgeon time. Operative time is very expensive, approximately, $50/minute, therefore, a health care savings of approximately 10 minutes per case, or $1,250, would be realized using the OHSU device.

Market strategy is to out license the patent rights to an existing company. A US Provisional patent application was filed 09/16/2013. A 3-D prototype clip and applicator system has been produced.



Patents Filed


For more information, contact:

Michele Gunness
Senior Technology Development Manager