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A Conformal Intervertebral Disc Prosthesis

H. E. Bennink
Bart M. ter Haar Romeny
Organization: Eindhoven University of Technology
Department: Department of Biomedical Engineering
N. F. Kamperman

2005 Wolfram Technology Conference
Conference location

Champaign IL

About 70 to 85 percent of all people experience a lower back complaint in a particular period of their lifetime. Within a considerable part of this group (about 20 percent) some kind of arthrosis arises, which may lead to chronic pain. Although the cause of lower back pain remains unclear in many cases, it is generally accepted that degeneration of the intervertebral discs plays an important role in the causes of these complaints.

In order to cancel the pain due to these complaints, there are three common solutions: restriction, arthrodesis (fixation), and replacement of the particular joint. In the first part of the past century, arthrodesis was the most often applied intervention. But the fixation of joints leads in most cases, apart from loss of function, to overload of adjacent joints. Nowadays, replacement of hip and knee joints by prostheses is the order of the day, and we strive for the same successes with an intervertebral disc replacement.

Because proper fixation of the intervertebral disc prosthesis is of great importance, geometric conformance of the surface of the prosthesis to the patientís vertebra is certainly a welcome addition to todayís prostheses. Hip and knee prostheses can be fixed into the long femur and tibia bones, but the artificial disc has to be fixed onto the vertebral surface. From modern 3D MRI and CT scans it is in principle possible to segment the exact shape of the required disc, so the geometry of the customized prosthesis may be acquired without any surgery.

*Science > Medicine

Intervertebral Disc Prosthesis.zip (2.1 MB) - ZIP archive