Novel, non-invasive treatment could mean fewer surgeries for children with scoliosis

A novel, non-invasive treatment for scoliosis could improve the quality of life for pediatric patients, according to James Barsi, MD, assistant professor of orthopedic surgery for Stony Brook Medicine in Stony Brook, N.Y.

According to a press release, the hospital recently began offering the MAGnetic Expansion Control (MAGEC) Spinal Growing Rod, a minimally invasive treatment for children with early onset scoliosis. Doctors implant the rod and then use an external remote control outside the body to lengthen the magnetically controlled rod as the child grows.

“The new MAGEC Spinal Growing Rod is a novel technology and a giant leap forward in the treatment of progressive early onset scoliosis,” Barsi said in the press release. “We are thrilled that Stony Brook can perform this state-of-the-art surgery to provide our patients with top-notch care in Long Island and beyond.”

Barsi performed the first MAGEC procedures in summer 2015 along with colleagues David Wallach, MD, an assistant professor of orthopedic surgery and Wesley Carrion, MD, an assistant professor of orthopedic surgery.

Traditional treatment requires surgeries about twice a year to lengthen the rod while a child is still growing, but according to the release, the MAGEC rod can be lengthened in a non-invasive way through magnetic control.

“The surgery is less invasive, making the adjustments easier for patients during their course of treatment because they need fewer surgeries,” Barsi said in the press release. “This results in less time for the procedure and less pain for the patient.”

The MAGEC rod is approved for children younger than 10 years with scoliosis greater than 50° in magnitude.



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