First MAGEC® surgery in the U.S. completed at Shriners Hospitals for Children

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Health Care System Pioneers Innovative Pediatric Spine Surgery

The newest treatment being offered for young children with scoliosis curves too large for bracing is the MAGEC (MAGnetic Expansion Control) Spinal Bracing and Distraction System. Children worldwide are affected by scoliosis, or a curvature of the spine and Shriners Hospitals for Children® — Philadelphia has an extensive scoliosis program that is designed to treat all forms of the condition, using every tool available.

In the past, these large and potentially life-threatening curves were treated with traditional growing rods, which require a moderate surgical procedure for implantation, then a smaller procedure every six months to lengthen the spine. Although the lengthening procedures are relatively minor, they still involve general anesthesia, anxiety and discomfort. The MAGEC rods are an alternative to the emotionally and physically painful treatment regimen of the traditional growing rods. With MAGEC rods, there is still a moderate procedure for implantation, but the non-invasive lengthening procedure eliminates the need for repeated lengthening surgeries. This results in significant safety, health, mental and physical benefits for the child and their family. Patients will also be able to get back to their activities of daily living sooner with this surgical option.

After the initial MAGEC surgery, this specially designed rod can be gradually lengthened from outside of the skin, and in the exam room, avoiding the need for general anesthesia and an incision, with the External Remote Control (ERC). Magnets outside the body contained in the ERC device communicate with the magnets of the implanted rods. The ERC is a portable, hand-held unit that uses permanent magnets to automatically modify the length of the growing rod through the touch of a button. The ERC will be used a few times a year as the child continues to grow.

“The MAGEC system is a game-changer in early onset scoliosis care. We expect that it will decrease the number of surgeries these young patients have to undergo. The decrease in surgeries will translate into decreased complication rates,” said Philadelphia Shriners Hospital orthopaedic surgeons, Patrick J. Cahill, M.D., and Harold J.P. van Bosse M.D., regarding this historic case.

The first patient to benefit from this procedure is Tianni Swint, a 4 year old with infantile scoliosis and Prader-Willi syndrome, from Brooklyn, N. Y. Her parents, James Swint and Shakema George, did a lot of research to seek out the best option for Tianni. They welcomed this new innovative option to aid in their daughter’s treatment for scoliosis.

The spine team members at the Philadelphia Shriners Hospital are known for being pioneers in the newest cutting-edge technology for spine care. Shriners Hospitals for Children — Philadelphia is proud to have completed the first surgery using the MAGEC system in the United States since the FDA granted 510K clearances on February 27, 2014. Ellipse Technologies, LLC, a global medical device company, developed MAGEC (MAGnetic Expansion Control) Spinal Bracing and Distraction System.

About Shriners Hospitals for Children
Shriners Hospitals for Children is changing lives every day through innovative pediatric specialty care, world-class research and outstanding medical education. Our 22 locations in the United States, Canada and Mexico, provide advanced care for children with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate.

Shriners Hospitals for Children is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and relies on the generosity of donors. All donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law.

About Ellipse Technologies
Ellipse Technologies, Inc. is a privately held medical device company located in Irvine, California. The Company is dedicated to the design, development, and commercialization of its evolving proprietary technology platform for orthopedic and spinal applications. This technology enables precisely controlled, non-invasive post-operative adjustment of implants allowing surgeons to better address a range of clinical needs. In addition to the MAGEC® system, Ellipse markets the PRECICE® limb lengthening system. Ellipse is developing additional products to significantly improve clinical outcomes in a variety of applications through its collaboration with surgeon thought leaders. For more information, visit www.ellipse-tech.com