March 1, 2018 — A new study of the NuVasive MAGEC Rod System for children with early-onset scoliosis has found that it “significantly releases titanium and possibly aluminum,” and further releases the metal vanadium.
The researchers warned that MAGEC possibly releases more titanium than traditional growing rods.
They recommended investigating the risk of increasing amounts of titanium, aluminum, vanadium, and other metal ions in the bloodstream of children with the MAGEC Rod.
They also recommended studying the structural properties of the MAGEC Rod implant, and exposure to metal particles from using magnets to extend the rod.
“Metal ions released from spinal instruments can cause localized debris and distribute systemically to settle on distant organs.”
The problem is that children with early-onset scoliosis live with metallic implants for a substantial amount of time. As they grow, they must undergo medical procedures to extend the rods. These procedures may result in tiny particles of metal shaving off the rods, entering the bloodstream. This can potentially lead to metallosis (metal poisoning).
The conclusions of the study were based on data from 52 children who were implanted with either traditional growing rods or the new magnetically-controlled MAGEC Rod System. They had blood tests to check metal ion levels between December 2014 and February 2015.
The study was published in January 2018 by Dr. Caglar Yilgor and colleagues in the journal Spine Deformity — Metal Ion Release During Growth-Friendly Instrumentation for Early-Onset Scoliosis: A Preliminary Study.