While there are various options available for the fixation of the lesser digits, one company offers a variety of reliable implant choices in one easy-to-use screw and anchor blade system.
The DigiFuse™ Implant System offers podiatrists multiple implant combinations consisting of 2.0 mm and 2.5 mm screws with 0 degree and 10 degree blades as well as standard and short blade options, notes the manufacturer Metasurg.
Metasurg explains that the cannulated titanium implants and instruments allow for easy and accurate placement. It adds that the implants do not require storage at reduced temperatures prior to surgery. The reusable system allows surgeons to keep the implants in the sterilization tray and eliminates the costs associated with disposable instruments, adds Metasurg.
Charles Gudas, DPM, and Gregory Bryan, DPM, not only attest to DigiFuse’s affordability but they also confirm its ease of use and superior results in a multitude of fusion procedures.
In general, the DigiFuse system costs less than some of its competitive brands although it is more expensive than using Kirschner wire, notes Dr. Bryan. However, when looking at the long-term benefits, timeliness and easy removal, the rewards of the DigiFuse System outweigh the added expense, adds Dr. Bryan, who is in private practice in Shreveport, La.
“In addition to the ease of placing the cannulated DigiFuse implant over a guide wire, the implant comes in two sizes,” explains Dr. Gudas, who is in private practice in Charleston, S.C. “The distal end of the implant is angled in two increments, enabling the surgeon to build the desired amount of flexion into the fusion site.”
“In my opinion, the DigiFuse prosthesis is indicated for the surgical treatment of rigid fixed hammertoe formation in the second, third and fourth toes,” adds Dr. Gudas, a Fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. “The DigiFuse prosthesis can (also) be utilized with a Weil osteotomy/plantar plate repair.”
Robert G. Parker, DPM, also notes he enjoys the versatility of the DigiFuse Implant System, which he has been using since 2011.
“(DigiFuse) allows me to do multiple toes at one time. The product selection with different head or blade length sizes and screw lengths allow use in a greater variety of anatomical toe variances,” says Dr. Parker, a Fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons.
Specifically, Dr. Parker notes the DigiFuse System is beneficial to repair the digital anatomy at both the proximal and distal interphalangeal levels of deformity.
Podiatrists can cover a wide range of anatomy with DigiFuse’s standard, short and mini-implant options, notes Metasurg. The complete fusion system includes guide wires, broaches, screw pickup forceps and insertion/removal drivers. Metasurg explains it offers implants and instrumentation as a single system or separately as individual components.
As with many implant devices, Dr. Parker advises podiatric surgeons not to use the DigiFuse device in patients with osteoporosis or compromised bone “as it can dislodge and penetrate the wall of the middle phalanx or distal phalanx.”