Dr. Alberto Marqués, traumatologist, director of the Endoscopic Surgery Unit at Policlínica Gipuzkoa and member of Top Doctors, has designed a device that optimizes time during surgery. Almara, as he has named it, is a device that performs bone grafts during surgical interventions in a record time of 10 seconds, as opposed to the 15-minute duration of the previous process. For this reason, the device offers significant advantages over traditional techniques.
What is bone grafting?
Bone grafting is a procedure that consists of replacing missing bone in order to repair complex bone fractures that do not heal well or that may pose a risk to the patient’s health. It is a very common procedure and is used in almost all branches of orthopedic reconstructive surgery in order to repair broken or injured bones. Surgical spinal fusion, on the other hand, is a widely used method for the treatment of lumbar instability that causes pain.
How does it work?
Until now there was no device designed to perform this task, so the process was cumbersome, slow and unsafe. Thanks to Almara, the procedure is simplified, is much more efficient and comfortable, and makes it possible to easily reach the disc space, especially in spinal operations. During these operations, small amounts of bone are taken from the patient’s pelvis or from a donor and placed between the vertebrae, with the aim of improving instability and strengthening the spine. According to Dr. Marqués, “The origin of “Almara” arose from the need to design a device that would allow us to easily reach the disc space. Incisions are getting smaller and smaller, and because they are so small, the disc space, which is the space that must be accessed to join the vertebrae, was very far away” Dr. Marqués’ main objective in designing Almara was to simplify the process and make it more efficient.
Advantages of Almara
Among the main advantages offered by this device is that it improves the overall surgery time, since the insertion of the graft can be performed by the nurses while the surgeon performs other tasks required prior to surgery. “The nurse places the bone graft inside the device, the device allows me to access the disc space very easily, without putting the neurological structures at risk and, with a couple of hammer blows, I insert the graft where I want to leave it. Thus, we obtain a very important benefit in reducing operating room time and in simplifying a process that was previously quite laborious and uncomfortable,” explains Dr. Alberto Marqués.
In the following video Dr. Marqués himself talks about the operation of this new device.