WO/2007/008710 is referenced by 101 patents.
In one embodiment, an apparatus includes a cannula configured to provide percutaneous access to a nucleus of an intervertebral disc, and an elongate body configured to be movably disposed within a lumen of the cannula. The cannula also defines an opening. The elongate body defines an internal passageway and an opening at a distal portion of the elongate body. The internal passageway of the elongate body can be coupled to a suction source. The elongate body has a cutting portion disposed on an edge of the opening of the elongate body and the elongate body is configured to draw a portion of tissue from within the nucleus of the intervertebral disc into the opening of the elongate body when the suction source is activated. The cutting portion is configured to sever the portion of tissue from the remaining tissue when the elongate body is moved relative to the cannula.