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Letter to the Editor
BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 176936, 6 pages
Clinical Study

One-Year Follow-Up of a Series of 100 Patients Treated for Lumbar Spinal Canal Stenosis by Means of HeliFix Interspinous Process Decompression Device

1European Neurosurgical Institute (EUNI), Via Chira 2, 31100 Treviso, Italy
2Istituto di Radiologia, Università Cattolica, Largo A. Gemelli, 00100 Rome, Italy
3Istituto di Fisiatria, Università di Chieti, Via dei Vestini 31, 66100 Chieti, Italy

Received 13 January 2014; Accepted 24 March 2014; Published 15 April 2014

Academic Editor: Roberto Gazzeri

Copyright © 2014 Alberto Alexandre et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. New interspinous process decompression devices (IPDs) provide an alternative to conservative treatment and decompressive surgery for patients with neurogenic intermittent claudication (NIC) due to degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis (DLSS). HeliFix is a minimally invasive IPD that can be implanted percutaneously. This is a preliminary evaluation of safety and effectiveness of this IPD up to 12 months after implantation. Methods. After percutaneous implantation in 100 patients with NIC due to DLSS, data on symptoms, quality of life, pain, and use of pain medication were obtained for up to 12 months. Results. Early symptoms and physical function improvements were maintained for up to 12 months. Leg, buttock/groin, and back pain were eased throughout, and the use and strength of related pain medication were reduced. Devices were removed from 2% of patients due to lack of effectiveness. Conclusions. Overall, in a period of up to 12-month follow-up, the safety and effectiveness of the HeliFix offered a minimally invasive option for the relief of NIC complaints in a high proportion of patients. Further studies are undertaken in order to provide insight on outcomes and effectiveness compared to other decompression methods and to develop guidance on optimal patient selection.