Donna R. suffered from lower back pain for 30 years
Pain limited Donna’s ability to do the simple things in life. Riding in the car to the grocery store or doing household chores caused her a great deal of pain. Donna relied on steroid injections to manage the pain, but after twenty years, injections weren’t working any more. She tried several other treatment options that provided little relief.
Constant, nagging pain in your lower back or legs may be the result of normal aging changes in your spine. But there is good news – you can do something about it. You don’t have to live with the pain. An exciting new treatment is available that offers new hope to thousands of people suffering from lower back pain.
Lasting Pain Relief with Vertiflex® Superion
Vertiflex Superion® is a new procedure for treating lumbar spinal stenosis, a common cause of lower back pain in people over 50. Vertiflex Superion provides lasting pain relief without the risks or long recovery time of major surgery. In fact, Vertiflex Superion can eliminate the need for major spine surgery for many patients.
Donna was excited and hopeful when she learned about Vertiflex Superion. After the procedure and a healing period of a few weeks, she woke up one day and her lower back pain was gone. The pain has not returned. Eight weeks after the procedure, Donna played golf again for the first time in years.
Symptoms and Causes of Spinal Stenosis
Constant ache and pain in the lower back may be lumbar spinal stenosis. Pain that gets worse when standing but improves when sitting or bending forward slightly, as when leaning on a grocery cart, is the classic symptom of spinal stenosis. More than 40% of people over the age of 60 have spinal stenosis, a result of normal aging. 1
Spinal stenosis is caused by normal, arthritic changes in the spine, loss of disc height or thickening of the ligament that connects the bones. Spinal stenosis can trigger pain, numbness and tingling in the legs when bones or discs start to pinch nerves. Changes in the lower back are referred to as lumbar spinal stenosis.
Spinal stenosis will not improve on its own because it is caused by physical changes in the spine. Over time it is likely to get worse. When pain starts to limit everyday activities, it is time to get help. You don’t have to live in pain.
Diagnosing Spinal Stenosis
The first step will be getting an accurate diagnosis. A Spine and Pain Care Specialist with expertise in Interventional Pain Management is the best doctor to see for diagnosing back pain. These doctors have advanced training in the complex interactions of the bones, discs, and nerves of the back. Using advanced diagnostic imaging techniques they can accurately diagnose the root cause of the pain. With an accurate diagnosis, your Pain Specialist can recommend the best treatment option to provide long term relief.
When you see an Interventional Pain Specialist, expect to give a thorough history of your pain. The specialist will order imaging for a more complete picture. MRIs are commonly used to diagnose spinal stenosis because they do the best job of showing bone and soft tissue structures of the back, and nerves that may be impacted.
Treatments for Spinal Stenosis
In the early stages patients with spinal stenosis may try over the counter medications, physical therapy, or chiropractic treatments to find relief. When longer-lasting relief is needed, your Interventional Pain Specialist can offer other options that don’t involve dangerous drugs or major back surgery.
One solution the doctors at the Heilman Center may recommend is Vertiflex Superion®. This procedure starts providing relief in as little as a week. Relief usually improves over time. It is reasonable to expect lifetime pain relief in the affected region of the spine, eliminating the need for major back surgery. In fact, after 5 years 90% of patients in a clinical study were satisfied with the results of their Vertiflex Superion procedure.
Who can benefit from Vertiflex Superion?
If you have lumbar spinal stenosis and the pain is affecting your quality of life, Vertiflex Superion is an excellent alternative to major surgery. This procedure provides the benefits of a laminectomy without the risks. For patients who are not healthy enough for major surgery, Vertiflex Superion is a great choice.
How does Vertiflex Superion relieve pain?
With the Vertiflex Superion procedure a small, flexible device is placed between two vertebrae of the spine through a small incision about 1” long. The device is opened between the back bones to create space in the spinal canal which relieves pressure on surrounding nerves. Vertiflex Superion works by supporting your existing anatomy and is 100% reversible.
This simple micro-surgery is performed on an out-patient basis. The procedure takes less than an hour and patients can return to their normal routine the day after surgery.
No rehabilitation or other physical therapy is needed. The recovery period is short, just 6-weeks of no bending, twisting or lifting more than 10 lbs. Vertiflex Superion improves patients’ mobility without destabilizing the spine, a risk of some other procedures to treat spinal stenosis
If you’ve been living with lower back pain or leg pain that has not improved or has been getting worse for more than a month, contact the Heilman Center to find the root cause and get a diagnosis. The Heilman Center’s 3-step process starts with a consultation with a Physician’s Assistant who will get a thorough history of you and your pain and order scans needed for diagnosis. Once your scans are complete, you will meet with the doctor for your detailed diagnosis and treatment options. You and the doctor can discuss whether Vertiflex Superion makes sense for you.
Now, Donna can ride in the car for hours without pain. She is able to play golf again.
About Vertiflex Superion Donna says “It’s like a miracle. It was the first thing that ever worked.”
Why wait to find pain relief? You don’t need to live in pain. Call (734) 796-7555 now to schedule an appointment with a Pain Specialist at the Heilman Center. Appointments are generally available within a week. The sooner you get started, the sooner we can help you find relief.
1 Kalichman L, Cole R, Kim D, Li L, Suri P, Guermazi A, Hunter D. Spinal stenosis prevalence and association with symptoms: The Framingham Study; Spine J. 2009.03.005; 10.1016. [NCBI] [US National Library of Medicine/National Institute of Health]