About the METRx® System

The METRx® System is designed for use in minimally invasive surgery and may be used in the cervical or lumbar spine.

METRx System

The METRx® System consists of a series of dilators and tubes designed to be used during minimally invasive surgery.

Minimally invasive spine surgery is different from traditional, open spine surgery in that the open approach involves making a long incision down the back, stripping large bands of muscle away from the spine and then retracting, or pulling to each side, the surrounding muscles so the surgeon can get a clear view of the vertebrae of the spine to be treated.

Minimally invasive spine surgery requires a small incision, muscle dilation and the use of microsurgical and image guided technologies to access, view and repair spinal deterioration or damage. Muscle dilation involves gently and gradually separating, rather than cutting and stripping the muscles that surround the spine.

Surgeons can use the METRx® System to perform various surgical procedures including discectomy, cervical foraminotomy, and others.

To perform a minimally invasive procedure using the METRx® System, your surgeon will make a small (less than 1 inch) incision in the skin of your back over the vertebrae to be treated and then insert a series of progressively larger dilators, one around the other, to gradually separate the muscles and create a "tunnel" or portal through which the surgery may be performed.

Once the procedure is complete, your surgeon will remove the tube. The incision will be closed with a few stitches and covered with an adhesive bandage.

The METRx® System is designed to enable visualization of the surgical field during a surgical procedure. Potential risks associated with the use of the METRx® System include, but are not limited to, transitioning to conventional open procedure, neurological damage, damage to the surrounding soft tissue, and instrument malfunction such as bending, fragmentation, loosening, and/or breakage (whole or partial).

Breakage of the tip in the patient may increase surgical time. The surgery also may not be effective. Similar risks are associated with the use of the system in other parts of the body.

To learn more about minimally invasive spine surgery, talk to your spinal surgeon. To find a spine surgeon who performs minimally invasive spine surgery, visit our Find A Doctor locator.

IRN 11556-1.0-04

It is important that you discuss the potential risks, complications, and benefits of the METRx® System with your doctor prior to receiving treatment, and that you rely on your physician's judgment. Only your doctor can determine whether you are a suitable candidate for this treatment.

  • Published: September 14, 2007
  • Updated: June 11, 2010