Journal of Comparative Effectiveness Research Publishes Pivotal Level 1 Evidence Comparing activL® Artificial Disc to ProDisc-L, Fusion and Conservative Care

While NMAs are becoming increasingly relied upon globally and across medical specialties, this NMA is pioneering in that it marks the first of its kind performed to compare device-to-device treatment modalities for the lumbar spine. The study, published in the Journal of Comparative Effectiveness Research, pools outcomes from six randomized controlled trials studying the DDD patient to compare treatment modalities that had not previously been directly compared. The outcomes will be used by global Health Technology Assessments (HTAs), payers and healthcare providers to significantly aid in the clinical management of this otherwise highly-burdensome patient population.

“Our review of the literature revealed limited data comparing newer TDR devices with other existing treatment modalities, so an NMA was conducted,” said Chris Cameron, PhD, Director of Evidence Synthesis at Cornerstone Research Group and co-author of the study. Cameron and team have been involved in over 100 similar studies including the development of the PRISMA-NMA extension guidelines that were recently published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Using Bayesian statistics, the NMA allowed for estimates of comparative efficacy for treatment modalities that have not been compared directly in clinical trials, as well as estimates of the probability that a treatment is best, second best, and so on for a particular outcome. Among the comparators included in the NMA, activL Artificial Disc was demonstrated to be the most effective means to address chronic back pain sufferers in the outcomes of ODI success, back pain and patient satisfaction.

Jack Zigler, MD of the Center for Disc Replacement at the Texas Back Institute and lead author of the publication stated, “Broader view afforded by an NMA asserts that properly-selected patients do better with activL than fusion or conservative care or even first-generation lumbar discs.”

The study authors have made the full text of the manuscript available at in an effort to improve healthcare providers’ understanding of sound NMA methods and how they can be applied to inform clinical practices to the benefit of the patient.

About Aesculap Implant Systems, LLC
Aesculap Implant Systems, LLC, a B. Braun company, is part of a 175-year-old global organization focused on meeting the needs of the changing healthcare environment. Through close collaboration with its customers, Aesculap Implant Systems develops advanced spine and orthopaedic implant technologies to treat complex disorders of the spine, hip and knee. Aesculap Implant Systems strives to deliver products and services that improve the quality of patients’ lives. For more information, call 800-234-9179 or visit

About Cornerstone Research Group, Inc.
Cornerstone Research Group, Inc., specializes in providing evidence-based market access solutions. Founded in 2005, Cornerstone Research Group has honed their skills in Canada, one of the world’s most restrictive markets, and has applied them to a wide range of global programs. Using a team of over 40 experts, many of whom are cross-trained in health economics, evidence synthesis and medical writing, Cornerstone Research Group seeks to identify, demonstrate, and communicate product value to payers, providers, and patients throughout the product lifecycle. For more information, visit

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SOURCE Aesculap Implant Systems, LLC

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About the Author: Bob Cooper

Bob Cooper is Canadian Business Tribune''s senior editor. He is also a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist and a bestselling author. He lives in London Ontario and covers the intersection of money, politics and finance. He appears periodically on national television shows and has been published in (among others) The National Post, Politico, The Atlantic, Harper’s,, Vice and He also has served as a journalist and consultant on documentaries for CBC and Global News . In 2014, he was the winner of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers' investigative journalism award, and the winner of the Izzy Award for Journalism from Ithaca College's Park Center for Independent Media. He was also a finalist for UCLA's Gerald R. Loeb Award and Syracuse University's Mirror Award. Before becoming a journalist in 2006, Sirota worked in Washington for, among others, U.S. Rep. Bernie Sanders, the U.S. House Appropriations Committee Minority Staff and the Center for American Progress.