World Neurosurg. 2022 Dec 29:S1878-8750(22)01826-5. doi: 10.1016/j.wneu.2022.12.120. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Pedicle screw fixation provides one of the most stable spinal constructs. Their designs together with osseous characteristics have been known to influence the screw-bone interplay during surgical maneuvers and thereafter the fusion process. Various technical modifications to enhance screw performance have been suggested. This study evaluated the pull-out strength and axial stiffness of a novel pedicle screw design with variable thread geometry and pitch.
METHODS: The newly designed triple threaded pedicle screw is tapered, and has unique out-turned flanges to hold the cancellous bone and a finer pitch at its distal and proximal end to engage the cortical bone. Five lumbar and 4 lower thoracic cadaveric vertebrae were divided into hemivertebrae. A standard cancellous pedicle screw and the newly designed pedicle screw were inserted into each hemivertebra. Axial stiffness and peak pull-out force between the screw types were compared; a finite element analysis was also performed to additionally compare the pull out under toggle forces.
RESULTS: In cadaveric study, the axial stiffness of the new screw was significantly better than that of the standard screw. However, the peak load between the screws was not statistically different. Finite element analyses suggested lesser stress at bone-implant interface for the new screw along with better axial stiffness under both co-axial and toggle forces.
CONCLUSIONS: Our novel pedicle screw design with variable thread geometry demonstrates greater axial stiffness compared with the standard screws, and therefore is likely to withstand a greater surgical manipulation.