VCF Market: Interest Remains High As Market Share Shifts
Executive SummaryAlthough the spine market appears to be stabilizing to some extent, the vertebral compression fracture market continues to be challenged by reimbursement issues and lingering controversy stemming from the New England Journal of Medicine articles questioning the efficacy of vertebroplasty and vertebral augmentation as a treatment for VCFs.
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With recent changes to US patent laws, a landmark US Supreme Court decision, and the emergence of so-called “patent trolls” in the medical device community, it seems everyone is talking patents. Medical device patents and litigation are “booming,” according to industry experts, and medtech companies need to pay close attention.
Privately held DFINE Inc., a supplier of tools for treating vertebral compression fractures in the spine, is trying to reposition itself from being a spine company to an “interventionalist company” that provides tools necessary to interventional radiologists, neuroradiologists, and oncologists.
The company’s StabiliT Radiofrequency Targeted Vertebral Augmentation (RF-TVA) delivers a highly viscous cement that it says makes the delivery of cement into a vertebral body easier for physicians and safer for patients. Now, DFINE executives see the RF energy as a key to the door that could lead the company to much larger markets, enabling it to go beyond vertebral compression fractures and someday perhaps even beyond the spine to treating mestastic cancer of the bone.