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    Posted May 12, 2013 by
    Irvine, California

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    Early-onset scoliosis (EOS) is a rare condition that affects a small population of very young children. It causes severe curvature of the spine. If not corrected, EOS can eventually interfere with lung function and growth and can be fatal.

    Current treatments for EOS are limited. Young patients implanted with traditional growing rods that are used today is considered major surgery. Once implanted, patients may undergo up to two surgeries per year for several years.

    Ellipse Technologies, Inc., developed a type of growing rods that can expand using remote control technology called MAGEC™ (MAGnetic Expansion Control) System. The magnetic growing rods are attached to one or both sides of the spine. Following surgery, these rods can be lengthened non-invasively as the child grows using an external remote controller. Rare earth magnets inside the rods communicate with the External Remote Controller (ERC) and allow physicians to modify the length of the rods without surgery. While the MAGEC System has not been approved for commercial distribution in the United States, it has recently granted approval to be used on two children for compassionate use (http://vimeo.com/65768174).

    “This technology is one of the most significant advances in the treatment of this condition,” said Dr. Akbarnia. “Now children won’t have to suffer the stress and physical trauma of repeated open surgeries every six months for multiple years. The lives of children suffering from EOS will be significantly improved with this device.”

    “MAGEC utilizes non-invasive remote control technology to vastly improve treatments and outcomes for children suffering with EOS,” said Ed Roschak, Chief Executive Officer of Ellipse (www.ellipse-tech.com). “Our hope is that in the near future, MAGEC will be widely available in the United States to children who need them.”
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