Health Technology Brief

supporting sound, evidence-based decision making

HT Briefs are concise technology assessment reports that provide an overall evaluation of the potential clinical and economic impact of new technologies
that are in the early stages of dissemination or of existing technologies that are being used for new applications.

View a sampling of our HT Briefs.

Bielfeld Eustachian Tube Balloon Dilation for the Treatment of Chronic Eustachian Tube Dysfunction in Adults

July 20, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Eustachian tube dysfunction (ETD) is the inability of the eustachian tube (ET) to ventilate the middle ear, drain secretions, or protect the middle ear from sounds or pathogens in the nasopharynx. ETD is associated with otologic and rhinology symptoms, including tinnitus (ringing in the ears), aural fullness, an inability to equilibrate middle ear pressure, a sensation of being underwater, impaired hearing, pain, and balance problems. Description of Technology: This health technology assessment focuses on ET balloon dilation (ETBD) with the Bielefeld balloon catheter, which is also referred to as the Bielefelder Ballonkatheter, Bielfeld, Bielefeld device, BET-Catheter, or, most recently, TubaVent balloon...

Acclarent Eustachian Tube Balloon Dilation for the Treatment of Eustachian Tube Dysfunction in Adults

July 13, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Eustachian tube dysfunction (ETD) is the inability of the eustachian tube (ET) to ventilate the middle ear, drain secretions, or protect the middle ear from sounds or pathogens in the nasopharynx. ETD is associated with otologic and rhinology symptoms, including tinnitus (ringing in the ears), aural fullness, an inability to equilibrate middle ear pressure, a sensation of being underwater, impaired hearing, pain, and balance problems. Description of Technology: The Aera Eustachian Tube Balloon Dilation (ETBD) System is the first balloon device approved for ETD in the United States. The Aera device consists of a guidance catheter and a 16 × 6...

Endovenous Mechanochemical Ablation (MOCA) (ClariVein Infusion Catheter, Nonthermal Vein Ablation System; Vascular Insights LLC) for Treatment of Varicose Veins

June 30, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Approximately one-fifth of adults have varicose veins of the lower extremities, and up to 60% may have chronic venous disease that predisposes them to varicosities. Recently developed techniques such as liquid or foam sclerotherapy, endovenous laser ablation (EVLA), and radiofrequency ablation (RFA) collapse and seal the vein, and are associated with better cosmetic outcomes and less pain. However, thermal methods may cause damage to adjacent nerves and other tissues, including skin burns and pigmentation, nerve damage, and formation of arteriovenous fistulas. Description of Technology: This health technology assessment focuses on the use of endovenous mechanochemical ablation (MOCA) (ClariVein Infusion Catheter) for...

Open Sacroiliac Joint Fusion for Unspecified Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction

June 22, 2017 Health Technology Brief

The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) has been implicated as the primary source of pain in 15% to 30% of patients with chronic low back pain. Patients who experience pain for ≥ 6 months and do not respond adequately to nonsurgical, conservative management may be eligible for SIJ fusion. Description of Technology: Open SIJ fusion typically involves opening the SIJ, denuding of cartilage, and bone grafting. To stabilize the SIJ, the iliac crest bone and the sacrum are typically held together by plates or screws or an interbody fusion cage until the 2 bones fuse. Patient Population: This health technology assessment focuses on unspecified,...

Implantable Cardiac Loop Recorders for Detection of Atrial Fibrillation Following Cryptogenic Stroke

June 15, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Approximately one-third of strokes are cryptogenic (lack an identifiable and treatable cause). Undetected atrial fibrillation (AF) is one suspected cause of cryptogenic stroke. Inability to detect suspected AF after cryptogenic stroke presents a clinical management dilemma. Description of Technology: Cardiac implantable loop recorders (ILRs) assess arrhythmias in symptomatic and asymptomatic patients. These small, battery-operated, titanium-encased devices are implanted subcutaneously in the left parasternal region with the use of local anesthesia. ILRs are useful when electrocardiography (ECG) abnormalities are suspected but have not been confirmed on traditional ECG or Holter recordings. Patient Population: ILRs are indicated for patients with clinical syndromes...