Alphatec Spine, my previous employer in San Diego, launched the GLIF project, which was the project I had led, to the next phase of development and recognized me as one of the key inventors of the product. They dedicated the product line to my name and renamed it to the "Guyer Lumbar Interbody Fusion" technique and created a memory book of how I took the project from a napkin sketch to a fully developed product, capable of revolutionizing the way spine surgeons perceive minimally invasive spine surgery.
The executive team flew out to Boston and we had a video conference with all the team members in Carlsbad who had made GLIF a success. Placards like the one shown above were given to all team members and cakes were cut on both ends while we all shared stories. My parents and Dr. Steve Hochschuler flew in from Dallas and Autumn was by my side.
It's amazing to be recognized and honored in such a generous fashion for a project I truly poured my heart, soul and several years into. Having my family and friends both near and far away in Carlsbad to celebrate the milestone made the experience that much more meaningful. It was great to see the whole team get recognized for without their efforts, none of this would have ever been possible. Congratulations and thank you to all involved.
I really had no clue what to expect going into the awards ceremony and am still in disbelief about the recognition to the entire team over video conference, the dedication of the product line and the memory book. Everything was so nice, so very nice. Alphatec went above and beyond fathomable expectations which goes to show as Dr. Hochschuler stated, "they've got their hearts in the right place!"
From my end, developing the project and the job was the easy part. I was just doing what I love to do. What a great honor!------------
A little background in as close to laymen terms as I can find: The GLIF technique is a method for acheiving a full circumferential fusion of the spine (fusion to the front and back of the spine) while the patient remains in the prone position (on their belly). Previously this type of fusion required the patient to be moved during the surgery, either starting on their back then flipped to their belly or starting on their side and flipped to their belly. Moving the patient requires additional operating room time, more anesthesia and theoretically increases blood loss, etc. The technique also avoids dangerous approaches around the intestines and can allow procedures to be simulatenous implemented to really add a new element to spinal fusion.