If you have spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the space around the spine, you may experience bouts of lower back pain sometimes extending to the legs–or no pain at all. Regardless of the extent of your spinal stenosis, a motion-preserving device known as the coflex may provide the spine stabilization you need.
The coflex is an implant that is surgically placed during a minimally invasive procedure. The device is designed to provide a greater range of motion than what’s often experienced following traditional fusion surgery. Patients with the coflex are often able to:
• Stand upright without experiencing pain from pinched nerves
• Experience pain relief without the need to lean forward
• Enjoy pain relief sooner than with traditional fusion surgery*
*According to comparison studies of both procedures.
If you are a candidate for a coflex implant, it will be inserted through a small incision in your back. Surgery normally lasts a few hours. Decompression, involving removal of the part of the bone pressing on nerves, is part of the procedure.
Candidates for the coflex device must have tried non-surgical treatments such as OTC and prescription NSAIDs and physical therapy for at least six months before being considered for the implant. You will need to have received a definite diagnosis of spinal stenosis in your lower back, normally accomplished with image testing. Ultimately, determining if you are a candidate for a coflex implant involves:
• A review of your history with spinal stenosis
• Your previous reaction to other treatments
• How well any existing, unrelated medical conditions you may have, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, are currently managed
There is some risk with any spine surgery, even with a minimally invasive procedure. In trial studies, some patients did experience brief numbness, issues with wound healing, and problems related to preexisting medical conditions. However, a clinical trial of patients who had the device implanted found that the majority of subjects (86 out of every 100 patients in the study) had a successful outcome continuing at least two years after the procedure.
For more information, please call The Spine Institute at (310) 828-7757 and find out if spine surgery, Santa Monica patients receive, is the right treatment options for you. A pain-free life starts here.