A recent study published in the North American Spine Society’s Spine Journal revealed that a bone growth protein manufactured by Medtronic used in spinal fusions has been linked to an increased risk of male sterility. Our Florida back injury lawyers are particularly concerned because of the growing number of injured men who elect to have fusions after suffering traumatic spine injuries. About 80,000 patients per year undergo spinal fusions in the United States alone. Many of our clients who have sustained back injuries from a car wreck, slip and fall or cruise ship accident have considered having spinal fusion surgery.
Spine fusion surgery is when two bones in the back are permanently joined together to prevent them from moving. Fusions are usually performed with other back surgical procedures such as discectomies, laminectomis or foraminotomies, which remove the discs between the spine before fusion. Some surgeons opt for grafts, which uses bones taken from the patient or a cadaver to hold the bones together.
The Medtronic product in question is called, “Infuse,” and was approved by the FDA in 2002. The results of the study show that only men have an increased risk of sterility. Our Broward County defective medical device lawyers recommend that men who are considering having children consult with their orthopedic surgeons regarding the risks and benefits of using the Medronic product and the availability of alternative surgical techniques.