Vertiflex Specialist

Akash Bajaj, MD, MPH -  - Orthopedist & Pain Management Specialist

Akash Bajaj, MD, MPH

Orthopedist & Pain Management Specialist & Orthopedic Specialist located in Marina Del Rey, CA

Up to 95% of adults develop spinal degeneration in their lower backs due to normal wear and tear. Spinal degeneration leads to narrowing of the spinal canal, causing pinched nerves and pain that’s notoriously hard to treat. Dr. Akash Bajaj is an expert in the field who offers an innovative and effective solution — the Vertiflex Superion® Indirect Decompression System. Using a minimally invasive technique, many patients with lumbar spinal stenosis can finally get relief from their symptoms. To learn more, call the office in Marina Del Rey, California, or book an appointment online.

Vertiflex Q & A

Akash Bajaj, MD, MPH

What is Vertiflex®?

Vertiflex is the name of a company that produced an innovative treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis, the Vertiflex Superion Indirect Decompression System.

This treatment uses a minimally invasive procedure to implant a titanium device that safely and effectively decompresses your spine.

What is lumbar spinal stenosis?

Your lumbar spine (lower back) supports your body weight while allowing a broad range of twisting and bending movements. As a result, it’s susceptible to degenerative changes that occur over years of normal, daily wear and tear.

Lumbar spinal stenosis occurs when age-related disc degeneration and arthritis cause narrowing of the spinal canal. Since the spinal canal is the opening through which nerves and blood vessels travel, these vital soft tissues are pinched as the space narrows.

What are the symptoms of lumbar spinal stenosis?

Even though degenerative changes affect your lumbar spine, you may or may not have back pain. Your symptoms are most likely to arise from nerves that are pinched in the narrow spinal canal. As a result, you may experience:

  • Pain radiating through your buttocks and/or legs (sciatica)
  • Numbness or tingling in your buttocks and/or legs
  • Weakness in your leg and foot
  • Pain relief when leaning forward or sitting

How does Vertiflex Superion work?

The Superion implant is inserted between two spinous processes — bony projections on the back of each vertebra. The implant consists of a central supporting piece with two wing-like attachments.

When it’s inserted between two vertebra and the wings open, a depression in each wing cradles the spinous processes of the vertebrae above and below the device.

Once it’s in place, the implant gently holds the two bones apart, which enlarges the spinal canal and relieves pressure on the nerves. Now that your nerves are no longer pinched, symptoms are relieved.

How is Vertiflex Superion inserted into your spine?

Dr. Bajaj makes one incision above the damaged area of your spine. A narrow tube (cannula) is placed through the incision, then a series of tubes are placed over the first one.

Each additional cannula is slightly larger than the previous one, so they gently enlarge the opening by stretching the surrounding tissues. As a result, your muscles and connective tissues aren’t cut and they easily return to normal after your procedure.

When the final dilator is in place, the Superion implant is inserted through the opening in the center of the tube and precisely placed between two vertebrae.

Dr. Bajaj directs the placement of the device using either a specialized X-ray technique called fluoroscopy or by directly visualizing the insertion area.

When the implant is first inserted, the wing-like parts are closed. As soon as it’s in place, the wings are opened so they move into place, supporting the spinous processes and maintaining space in the spinal canal.

If you suffer from sciatica or back pain, call Dr. Bajaj, or book an appointment online.

 

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