The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a jaw fracture recovery device developed at the University of Minnesota.
The device, known as Minne Ties Agile MMF, is said to be a “disruptive technology” within the field of otorhinolaryngology, or conditions involving the ear, nose, throat and related structures of the head and neck.
Patients who experience a jaw fracture from vehicle crashes, sports injuries, physical assault or, in some cases, cancer, are typically fitted with a metal wiring during recovery. That conventional technology, however, is known to cause discomfort, abrasions on the lips and gums, and gingivitis. Surgeons have even complained about their own safety when installing and removing the metal wiring as its sharp edges can either poke them or the patient, subsequently raising the risk for disease transmission.
Edina-based Summit Medical, which manufactures medical devices for a number of conditions, including liposuction and nose surgery, inked a deal to license the Minne Ties device in 2014. With FDA approval, the company can now begin selling the product to hospitals around the nation.