Stand-alone interspinous spacer versus decompressive laminectomy for treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis

Expert Rev Med Devices. 2015;12(6):763-9. doi: 10.1586/17434440.2015.1100071. Epub 2015 Oct 21.


Objective: To compare the two-year clinical outcomes of a prospective, randomized controlled trial of an FDA-approved interspinous spacer with the compilation of published findings from 19 studies of decompressive laminectomy for the treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis.

Methods: Back and leg pain, Oswestry disability index (ODI), and Zurich Claudication Questionnaire (ZCQ) values were compared between spacer- and laminectomy-treated patients preoperatively and at 12 and 24 months.

Results: Percentage improvements between baseline and 24 months uniformly favored patients treated with the spacer for back pain (65% vs. 52%), leg pain (70% vs. 62%), ODI (51% vs. 47%) and ZCQ symptom severity (37% vs. 29%) and physical function (36% vs. 32%).

Conclusion: Both treatments provide effective and durable symptom relief of claudicant symptoms. This stand-alone interspinous spacer offers the patient a minimally invasive option with less surgical risk.

Keywords: Superion; interspinous spacer; laminectomy; lumbar spinal stenosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Back Pain / etiology
  • Decompression, Surgical* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Laminectomy* / adverse effects
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / surgery*
  • Spinal Stenosis / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome