Medica

ClaviBrace® offers solution to spiralling clavicle surgery costs

A clavicle fracture and pain management system launching at Medica 2011 could revolutionise the way clavicle fractures are treated and slash costs for health authorities. 

ClaviBrace® can elevate broken bone from the nerve bed, return a displaced fracture to its original length and hold it in place to heal naturally, potentially avoiding costly surgery to plate or pin and freeing up surgery time. 

Manufacturer Angel Med has combined components already routinely used to manage clavicle fractures, such as the arm sling and figure-of-eight splint, adding a lumbar support belt and anti-pressure cushioning to protect the nerves. Its state-of-the-art materials are also being used across a wider range of medical supports from Angel Med. 

The resulting ClaviBrace® is an all round, non-invasive, low cost solution to not only reduce spiralling healthcare costs but also deliver better long term patient outcomes.

The clavicle is the most commonly fractured bone, with 30,000 clavicle fractures every year in the UK alone (more than 10,000 of which are plated at an average cost of £5,000) and little or no recent advance in treatment. Across EU countries there are around 300,000 clavicle fractures annually. 

Cost savings on surgery could also fund ClaviBrace® for better healing of all minimal and moderate fractures currently treated with a sling or splint, neither  of which can lengthen or align a fractured clavicle. For those patients the reduced risks (and costs) of arthritis and shoulder malfunction in later life are beyond calculation, Angel Med contends. 

ClaviBrace® offers comfort and pain relief, solves inefficiencies of the broad arm sling and figure-of-eight splint, protects the neurovascular system and relieves neck fatigue associated with wearing a standard sling.  It gently draws the shoulders back, allowing the clavicle to maintain length; critical to functional shoulder structure. It also protects against further damage and allows greater mobility whilst healing, speeds recovery and return to work and sports. 

ClaviBrace® has already won the UK’s Da Vinci Medical Breakthrough Technology Award for innovation most likely to benefit patients. 

The system was devised after its inventor Barbara Thompson fell from her horse, smashing her clavicle in four places. In excruciating pain and desperate to avoid an operation, she devised a prototype harness that eased the pain, helped her heal naturally and removed her from the operating list. Five weeks later her surgeons’ reaction was to proclaim her a walking miracle. 

The resulting ClaviBrace®, Angel Med believes, could benefit other shoulder trauma such as tendon tear, dislocation and arthritis, plus as a posture aid. Debbie Nicholls – Press Officer. Hall 16: UK Pavilion Stand G10-2