Reno Pain

Vertiflex Spine- Superion Indirect Decompression System (IDS)

Written by Nevada Advanced Pain Specialists staff

vertiflex illustration

Looking to escape the poor air quality of Fresno and related health problems, Roberta Tatum and her husband moved to the Reno area about 7 months ago. After making the move, Roberta, who also had chronic back pain for years, started experiencing unexplained leg and groin pain. Luckily, her pain doctor from Fresno had studied under Dr. Patterson and recommended our practice to her. Roberta was diagnosed with moderate to severe Lumbar Spinal Stenosis (LSS) and had no success with conservative treatments for her leg pain. Dr. Patterson then recommended the Superion Indirect Decompression System (IDS). This recently approved treatment option is safe and effective for leg pain caused by lumbar stenosis.

LSS can be the result of aging and “wear and tear” on the spine from everyday activities. It can lead to narrowing of the spinal canal that may result in pain, numbness, tingling, and/or weakness in the back and legs, which is usually more noticeable when you walk and decreases when you sit or bend forward. Doctors will typically first try prescription pain medications, physical therapy and exercise, and epidural steroid injections to ease the pain. If these approaches do not alleviate the pain, then doctors can recommend traditional decompression surgery or something less invasive, such as the Superion IDS. The Superion device is implanted through a small tube the size of a dime to reduce tissue damage and blood loss. The anatomic design provides optimal fit and preserves a patient’s anatomy and ability to maintain motion. (See pictures below for a better idea.) The Superion implant acts as an indirect decompression device, reducing pressure on affected nerves and helping the patient achieve relief without having to bend over.

Roberta had the Superion IDS implant in November and is no longer having leg or groin pain. Her posture has improved as well and she described the procedure as “a piece of cake.” Roberta did not have any soreness the next day and her recovery was simple and straight-forward. The Superion IDS is certainly less daunting than the traditional decompression surgery process and is worth taking a look at if surgery and/or conservative treatments have not worked before. Talk with your provider if you have any questions about this procedure. Currently, Dr. Patterson and Dr. Nairizi are the only physicians trained in and performing the procedure in the state of Nevada. You can go online at as well for more general information.