Vertiflex Superion

Vertiflex Superion Q&A

Our spine is composed of a flexible column of 24 vertebrae bones. There is soft tissue between each of the vertebrae. With aging and wear and tear from daily activities, our spinal canal can narrow and pinch the nerves in our lower back to cause a lumbar spinal stenosis. The result is pain in our back and legs. At Racz Pain Centers, we offer innovative procedures such as the Vertiflex Superion for the treatment of moderate lumbar spinal stenosis. The Vertiflex procedure uses a small implant that is placed inside the spine to help prevent reduction of the space when standing or walking. This provides relief by lifting pressure off the nerves to alleviate leg and back pain symptoms that often accompany the condition.

What is the Vertiflex Superion procedure?

The Vertiflex Superion procedure is an innovative and minimally invasive procedure for the treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis. This FDA-approved, outpatient treatment aims to give those with lumbar spinal stenosis the freedom to get on with their daily lives.
The Vertiflex is a minimally invasive stand-alone interspinous process decompression procedure. This involves implanting a device (or spacer), such as the Superion®, between the spinous processes, which are the thin, bony projections on the back of the spine. Vertiflex provides patients with a clinically proven, minimally invasive solution that is designed to deliver long-term relief from the leg and back pain associated with lumbar spinal stenosis. The Vertiflex device is implanted between the posterior aspects, or back part, of the spine. The device prevents extension of the spine while still allowing flexion.

How does the Vertiflex Superion procedure work?

The Vertiflex Superion procedure is a simple, out-patient procedure handled in our surgical center. The procedure takes about thirty minutes for the implant with an anesthesiologist. For the Vertiflex procedure, a patient is positioned face down on their stomach, and a local anesthetic and/or general anesthesia is administered.
With the use of real-time imaging, the surgeon makes one small incision in your lower back and implants the spacer between two spinous processes (e.g., L4-L5). The surgical incision is then closed. The device involves no tissue or bone damage and minimal blood loss.

What are the advantages of the Vertiflex Superion procedure?

When the alternative is major surgery, Vertiflex Superion provides all the benefits of laminectomy surgery without the risks. The other advantage of this procedure is the short recovery time of just a few weeks, compared to months needed for recovery from major back surgery.
Vertiflex provides fast relief of pain caused by lumbar spinal stenosis. Many patients report relief in as little as one week after their procedure. Relief generally improves over time. In fact, this procedure has the potential to provide lifetime pain relief in the affected area of the back for many patients.

Some additional benefits that have been shown by research studies include:

  • 90% of patients were satisfied after 5 years
  • An 85% decrease in patients using opioids

Spinal stenosis will not improve on its own. Over time, it is likely to get worse and limit everyday activities and affect quality of life. The first step towards treatment is an accurate diagnosis. At Racz Pain Centers, we specialize in interventional pain and work with our patients to address health conditions that affect the bones, discs and nerves of the back. With our accurate medical diagnosis, we can evaluate if you are a good candidate for the Vertiflex procedure.