Revolutionizing Spine Care…Changing Lives

Orthopedics This Week

We are very proud to be Texas Back Institute especially this week!  On a day to day basis each member of our team makes a difference in our patients lives.  It can be something as small as reassuring a patient that their injury should heal on it’s own in time or sometimes can be as big as performing a surgery that allows our patient to play with their children again.  However large or small the accomplishments, we relish in knowing that we are making a difference with our patients.

Well, today we are excited to share that Orthopedics The Week (OTW), the most widely read publication in the Orthopedics industry, has featured some of the things that Texas Back Institute is involved in outside of our day to day treatment of patients.

The article below is about our CEO Emeritus and Chief Strategy Officer, Mike Franz, and his involvement in the International Spine and Orthopedic Institute (ISOI).

“Marrying” Chinese and Western Surgeons”

Mike Franz is CEO of the International Spine and Orthopedic Institute (ISOI), a high-level, unprecedented cultural exchange of sorts. Franz, who is also CEO Emeritus and Chief Strategy Officer of the Texas Back Institute (TBI), tells OTW, “The Kerlan Jobe Clinic and TBI have jointly founded the International Spine and Orthopedic Institute (ISOI) with a goal of establishing orthopedic surgery hospitals in China. We are focusing on affluent Chinese patients, expatriates, and medical tourists. We have a unique partnering of Western and Chinese surgeons; to access the surgeons in China, we are relying on our existing relationships with senior orthopedic professors in that country. Through their introductions we are meeting skilled Chinese surgeons and are conducting training programs here and in China. Having established these relationships, we can thereby seek out affluent Chinese patients. The perception in China is that Western medicine is in a more advanced state than Chinese medicine, so there is quite a demand for what we are offering. Our U.S. training hubs are TBI (for spine), and Kerlan Jobe (for sports medicine and total joints). We are proud to have already created a partnership with the First Affiliated Hospital of Suzhou University last March, whereby we renovated a VIP orthopedic center and now send U.S. surgeons there. The next project is a private hospital where we have ownership in the orthopedic department and we will put our model into it. Our ultimate objective will be for ISOI to have majority ownership in standalone orthopedic surgery hospitals in China, something we expect will start to occur in 2013.”


The second article OTW published highlighting the Texas Back Institute this week features Dr. Lieberman and some of his thoughts on the future of spine surgery.
This is Dr. Lieberman with one of his patients from the Uganda Spine Surgery Mission.

 “Closer Than Ever to Arresting Degeneration”

Dr. Isador Lieberman of the Texas Back Institute has “no doubt” that biologics is the future of spine surgery. He tells OTW, “We are seeing more information these days on regeneration and alteration of the degenerative cascade—and the reversal of the degenerative cascade. This is stuff that will put us heavy metal spine surgeons out of business…and that is a good thing. The FDA has already starting shaking the trees with companies, and having them come out with stem cell possibilities. But the slowness of the regulatory process will ultimately delay the availability of this technology for patients. The good news is that we are closer than ever to arresting the degenerative process so that we’ll be able to manipulate that process with targeted therapeutics like growth proteins or something that is part of the BMP group. Many researchers are looking at various applications and trying to reassign them to another application. As for the regulators, somebody has to step up and point the FDA in the right direction. We need a point person who will say, ‘This is what you need to do; this is how to handle this opportunity. Why are they so hesitant?’ Because they look at this stuff and say, ‘We don’t know how to categorize it… is it a pill, an implant, or a procedure’… and no one wants take responsibility for this process.”


As part of the publication OTW also did a Top Ten of 2011 list.  Although one one story barely missed making it on the list, they highlighted this story of hope and love. We were honored and humbled as this one is very close to our hearts!  Please read the article below.

 The birth of an orthopedic superpower, the death of a young engineer, dangerous accusations of clinical investigative bias, turmoil in markets and companies and reflections of an inventive genius were picked by our readers as the most popular stories on the pages of Orthopedics This Week in 2011

Readers clicked their way to over 6 million page views of stories during the year. Those clicks, tracked by Google Analytics, told us what readers found most interesting.

Before we list the top ten stories, one important story just barely missed the cutoff but was important to our readers because it reminded us of the humanity and purpose of our great orthopedics industry.

Hope and Love

On June 6, Jeff Guyer, a young orthopedic engineer asked us to “continue to breath in hope and breathe out love” in his last blog before peacefully passing away. The son of Rick and Shelly Guyer reminded us that engineers, surgeons, nurses and all the other providers love to go to work every day in the hope to improve patients’ lives.

Jeff led a team that designed the GLIF (guided lumbar interbody fusion) procedure which won an OTW Best Spine Technology Award in 2009. 

So to end this post we ask that everyone take a second to “Breathe in Hope, Breathe out Love”!


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