Biomechanical stability with a new artificial vertebral body implant. 3-dimensional movement analysis of instrumented human vertebral segments
Knop, C.; Lange, U.; Bastian, L.; Blauth, M.
Der Unfallchirurg 104(10): 984-997
ISSN/ISBN: 0177-5537 PMID: 11699309 DOI: 10.1007/s001130170041
The authors present a new implant for vertebral body replacement in the thoracic and lumbar spine. The titanium implant is designated for reconstruction of the anterior column in injury, posttraumatic kyphosis or tumor of the thoracolumbar spine. The instrumentation has to be supplemented by a stabilizing implant. After positioning, the implant is distracted in situ, through which best contact to adjacent end-plates and 3-dimensional stability should be provided. The possibility of secondary dislocation or loss of correction should thereby be minimized. We investigated the biomechanical 3-dimensional stability in vitro, using Synex in combination with an anteriorly (Ventrofix) or a posteriorly (USS) stabilizing implant. The differences between both stabilizing implants were to be determined. Synex was compared with the "Harms titanium mesh cage" (MOSS) as vertebral body replacement. In a 3-dimensional spinal loading simulator, we determined the bisegmental (T12-L2) neutral zone (NZ), elastic zone (EZ), and range of motion (ROM) of 12 human cadaveric spines. After corpectomy of L1 we tested 4 groups of implant combinations: USS/Synex, USS/MOSS, Ventrofix/Synex, Ventrofix/MOSS. We analyzed the differences between each of the instrumentations as well as differences compared to the intact spine. In most directions, significantly higher stability was achieved with USS, compared with Ventrofix and the intact specimen. For axial rotation, with no instrumentation the stability of the intact spine was restored. With Synex a significantly higher stability was noted for extension, lateral bending, and axial rotation in comparison with the Harms cage. A tendency towards more stability for flexion was additionally observed with Synex. When using MOSS in combination with USS, it was necessary to perform a third operative step for induction of intervertebral compression via the posterior fixator. The posterior fixation was found to offer superior stability compared to the anterior one. Synex was at least comparable to MOSS for suspensory replacement of the vertebral body in the thoracolumbar spine. The evidence of higher biomechanical stability with Synex leads to the probability of a higher rigidity in vivo. Due to the distractability of Synex, a better intervertebral compression was achieved. Therefore, an additional tightening of the posterior fixator after insertion of Synex was not necessary, in contrast to the Harms cage.