ZipLine Medical touted a pair of studies highlighting the positives of its noninvasive Zip surgical skin closure device as an alternative to traditional staples.
The first study, by Dr. Roger Emerson of the Texas Center for Joint Replacement in Plano, compared 65 total knee arthroplasty patients treated with the Zip device with 65 subjects treated with staples. The control group showed more incision-related events in each of the four documented categories (calls to the clinic, clinic visits, antibiotics prescribed and emergency department admits). The staple cohort also showed higher clinic costs and opportunity costs for problem staple patients than the Zip-treated group, according to the study, which was published in the journal Cureus.
The study “provides insight on how a simple change in the closure method can lead to many potential downstream savings when considering a bundled payment model,” and surgeons and healthcare executives “may consider using the zip-type skin-closing device for patients undergoing TKA in an effort to improve efficiency, quality, and value of care,” Emerson wrote.
“In the study, we noticed that patients were apprehensive about staple removal and concerned when they saw redness around their staples, which in some cases triggered antibiotic prescriptions to avoid possible infection,” Emerson said in prepared remarks.
The second study, published in the Journal of Knee Surgery by Dr. Rodney Benner of the Shelbourne Knee Center in Indianapolis, involved 25 patients who underwent bilateral TKAs. Each patient was randomized to receive the Zip closure on one knee and conventional staples in the other.
Pain and arc of motion scores were better with the Zip device at two weeks. At eight weeks, patient-determined scar appearance was “significantly better” for the Zip cohort; surgeons, along with a blinded panel of plastic surgeons, also all preferred the scar quality on the Zip knee.
“The Zip closure improved the patient experience, and as a result, I have changed my practice to include Zip closure in all knee arthroplasties,” Benner said in a press release. “Patients reported less pain, improved cosmetic outcomes, and even improved early function by improving range of motion.”
In June, ZipLine Medical raised a $9 million funding round for its surgical skin closure line.