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Stryker Creates Computer-Assisted Surgery System to Fix Hip Fractures

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Hip fracture diagram

Orthopaedics manufacturer Stryker Corp. hopes to change how hip fractures are treated, with its new computer assisted surgery system, Stryker ADAPT for the Gamma3 Locking Nail System.

A hip fracture is essentially a break in the large leg bone, or femur, near the thigh. Hip fractures typically occur in people who have weakened bones from osteoporosis or from an impact injury, such as a car accident. The fractures can occur in the femoral head or neck.

The Stryker ADAPT was designed to more accurately repair breaks in the head of the femur. When this type of fracture occurs, the head, to some degree, is separated from the femoral neck. Depending on severity, this can cause a disruption in blood flow and even can lead to the dislocation of the bone.

Goal is Better Outcomes

Orthopaedic surgeons typically seek to align the pieces of bone and then anchor them into position with metal screws, nails and plates. Maintaining the correct position is key to a successful recovery, and Stryker is aiming to make it easier to stabilize the bone in the exact position.

Stryker describes its ADAPT system this way: “The Gamma3 Locking Nail System consists of a cephalomedullary nail, a lag screw and a distal locking screw. The cephalomedullary nail is placed into the canal of the femur, and then the lag screw is placed through the nail and into the neck and head of the femur. The lag screw and nail together help unite the fracture, allowing it to become more stable to help promote proper healing.”

The manufacturer points out that when the lag screw is not properly placed, patients may have to undergo revision surgeries, which can be even more painful than the original hip surgeries. Traditionally, surgeons use X-rays and mechanical instruments to position the screw. Stryker ADAPT uses the company’s proprietary computer guidance system, Adaptive Positioning Technology, to identify the correct location in each individual.

Furthermore, the company says the ADAPT system has been proven to assist surgeons with better outcomes, regardless of their expertise.

Stryker Recalls Rejuvenate Hip Implants

Some hip fractures cannot be treated by stabilizing the femoral bone and require total hip replacement surgery. Stryker manufactured the Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck hip stems, which were touted as a way for surgeons to give patients a custom fit of their hip implants. But they were made of metal components, which caused dangerous complications, such as early failure rates and metallosis, the poisoning of the bloodstream. Stryker recalled the hip replacement devices in July.

People in the United States suffer about 300,000 hip fractures per year.

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