Becker Spine Review

How Spine Surgeons Will Look Back at the Industry in 2034

Ten years ago, spine surgeons were expecting outpatient spine surgery and image-guided navigation to become more prevalent in a decade.


Now spine surgeons are thinking about how today’s state of the industry will be looked back on in 2034.


Question: How will spine surgeons in 10 years look at the current state of the field?


Todd Lanman, MD. ADR Spinal Restoration Center (Beverly Hills, Calif.): In 10 years, I believe spine surgeons will look back at the current state of the field and shake their head at the number of fusions performed instead of disc replacements. The same thing happened in 1958 when John Charley invented the artificial hip. Most surgeons at the time laughed at him and said his device would not work. That hip replacement was a fad. Instead, knee and hip fusion were standard of care. In 10 years the field will have shifted dramatically to motion preservation surgery — artificial disc replacement, facet joint replacement — to the point that we may see the ability to partially correct 20 degree to 25 degree scoliosis curves with motion sparing devices. Just like arthroplasty is now commonplace for hip and knee and fusion is rare, the same will be true of spine devices; cervical and lumbar artificial discs will be the mainstay of treatment and spinal fusion will be the rare exception.



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