Study design: Prospective, multicenter, randomized, controlled, investigational device exemption noninferiority trial.
Objective: To determine 2-year outcomes in patients with intermittent neurogenic claudication secondary to moderate lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) who were treated with the Superion interspinous process spacer.
Summary of background data: Interspinous spacers are a less-invasive treatment alternative compared with surgical decompression for patients with LSS unresponsive to conservative care. High-quality comparative data with these devices are lacking.
Methods: Patients presenting with intermittent neurogenic claudication secondary to moderate LSS who failed at least 6 months of nonsurgical management were randomly allocated to treatment with the Superion spacer or a control spacer (X-Stop) and followed for 2 years.
Results: A total of 391 randomized patients were implanted with Superion (n = 190) or control (n = 201) spacers at 29 sites in the United States between August 2008 and December 2011. Implants were successfully implanted in 99.5% of patients with Superion and 99.0% of control patients. The primary composite endpoint of this study was met, which demonstrated that the Superion spacer was noninferior to the X-Stop spacer. Leg pain, the predominant patient complaint, decreased in severity by 70% during 2 years in each group. Most (77%) patients achieved leg pain clinical success (improvement ≥20 mm) at 2 years. Back pain clinical success (improvement ≥20 mm) was 68%, with no differences between groups. Oswestry Disability Index clinical success (≥15% point improvement) was achieved in 65% of patients. The rates of complications and reoperations were similar between groups.
Conclusion: The Superion interspinous process spacer relieves symptoms of intermittent neurogenic claudication secondary to moderate LSS in the majority of patients through 2 years.
Level of evidence: 2.