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.

Collagen Meniscus Implant (CMI) (Menaflex; Ivy Sports Medicine LLC) for Meniscal Repair

February 16, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Meniscal loss or dysfunction causes abnormal wear on articular cartilage, promoting degeneration and osteoarthritis of the knee joint. Because of the limited vascularity of cartilaginous tissue, injuries to the menisci may not heal properly. Description of Technology: The Collagen Meniscal Implant (CMI) (formerly marketed as Menaflex) is an implant derived from bovine collagen used to treat acute or chronic advanced meniscal loss or damage with the intent of relieving symptoms and preventing joint degeneration. The CMI is a flexible, sickle-shaped disc that mimics the shape of the native meniscus and is attached arthroscopically to native tissue with suture. The porous,...

Percutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation for Treatment of Low Back Pain

February 9, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Mechanical low back pain (LBP) is common, affecting most individuals at some time. LBP is a leading reason for physician visits and work-related disability in the United States, with a lifetime prevalence of 60% to 80%. For an estimated 5% to 10% of patients, LBP becomes chronic (> 3 months in duration) with loss in work productivity and marked impact on healthcare utilization and costs. Description of Technology: Percutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (PENS) is a conservative, minimally invasive treatment for pain in which acupuncture-like needles connected through a cable to an external power source are inserted into the skin. Needle placement...

Continuous Subcutaneous Treprostinil for Treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

February 2, 2017 Health Technology Brief

Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) refers to the vascular remodeling of the small pulmonary arteries that is associated with elevated pulmonary arterial pressure (PAP) and eventually right ventricular failure (RVF). Symptoms of PAH begin as shortness of breath at exertion, later progressing to dyspnea with normal activities, and ultimately dyspnea at rest. Patients with advanced PAH are unable to perform any activity without shortness of breath or chest pain. PAH is an inexorable, progressive, and lethal disease. Incidence estimates vary and suggest a range of 5 to 52 cases per 1 million persons. Patients who remain untreated have an estimated survival...

Kiva VCF Treatment System for Treatment of Vertebral Compression Fractures

December 29, 2016 Health Technology Brief

Vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) occur when pressure is placed on weak vertebrae. More than 700,000 VCFs are diagnosed in the United States every year, causing substantial morbidity due to symptoms such as severe pain and disability in some patients. A majority (85%) of VCFs are due to osteoporosis; the remainder are due to primary or metastatic malignancy, hemangioma, or vertebral osteonecrosis.   Description of Technology: The Kiva system is a vertebral augmentation device that includes a cylindrical coil implant that is placed in the vertebrae and then filled with polymethyl methacrylate bone cement. Together, the implant and cement are intended to stabilize...

iFuse Implant System (SI-Bone Inc.) for Sacroiliac Joint Fusion for Treatment of Low Back Pain

December 29, 2016 Health Technology Brief

The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) has been implicated as the primary source of pain in 10% to 30% of patients with chronic low back pain. SIJ dysfunction is characterized by the malalignment or abnormal movement of the SIJ. Description of Technology: The iFuse Implant System was developed for minimally invasive SIJ fusion in patients who have not experienced adequate relief from nonsurgical management. The iFuse system consists of sterile, rigid titanium rods that are designed to minimize joint rotation, maximize joint surface area, and facilitate biologic fixation to bone. Using general anesthesia, fluoroscopic guidance, and a small incision, an orthopedic or neurologic...