Medtronic launches new spine surgery robot following Mazor acquisition

Medtronic’s new integrated robotic spine surgery system has begun treating its first U.S. patients, just months after last year’s acquisition of Mazor Robotics and a clearance from the FDA.

The medtech giant recently launched the Mazor X Stealth Edition, which combines Medtronic’s navigation platform with Mazor’s robotic guidance systems. The device provides three-dimensional planning tools and real-time visualization in the operating room for guided procedures.

"As part of our Surgical Synergy strategy, we believe Mazor X Stealth Edition will accelerate the advancement and adoption of robotic-assisted and navigated surgical technologies in spine," said Geoff Martha, president of Medtronic’s restorative therapies group, in a release.

The merger of robotics and navigation into a single platform may provide more predictable and reliable procedure workflows, said Jeffrey Gum, M.D., an orthopedic spine surgeon at Norton Leatherman Spine Center in Louisville, Kentucky, one of the first locations to employ the system.

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"Computerized surgical planning, 3D assessment of spine anatomy, robotic guidance and live navigation feedback are designed to provide a higher degree of accuracy throughout the surgical procedure," Gum added.

The surgical robot, which converts standard 2D fluoroscopic projections into a 3D image, was first used at Norton Healthcare as well as at Reston Hospital Center in Virginia, and Medtronic said it plans to roll out the system to different regions throughout the year.

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The Mazor X Stealth Edition received 510(k) clearance from the FDA in November 2018, after Medtronic acquired Mazor earlier that September in a $1.6 billion deal—the culmination of a series of investments in the Israel-based robotics company beginning in May 2016.