The XStop has previously been associated with a lower requirement for additional surgery and is considered by some to be as effective as a traditional laminectomy for addressing lumbar spinal stenosis. By reducing the pressure on the intervertebral discs the X-Stop reduces the likelihood of disc herniation, or bulging, and thereby corrects a major underlying cause of spinal stenosis symptoms such as radicular nerve pain, loss of sensation, and weakness. Those for whom the X-Stop is indicated include patients who:
- have been diagnosed with lumbar spinal stenosis
- suffer from intermittent claudication including leg pain, buttock pain, groin, or lower-back pain
- feel relief from symptoms on bending forward at the waist, or when in a cycling position
- have had limited success over six months with conservative treatments
- are over fifty years old
- have stenosis at one or two levels of the spine only
Xstop Procedure Eligibility
Patients should have had diagnostic imaging such as X-Ray, MRI, or CT scans to ascertain their suitability for the X-Stop procedure. Spinal anatomical variants can prevent the X-Stop being offered due to safety concerns and an inability to fit the device properly. Those with spinal fracture or slippage are unlikely to be candidates for the X-Stop procedure. If cauda equina syndrome, with bowel or bladder incontinence, is present then the patient will not be eligible for this procedure. Those with severe osteoporosis can experience significant issues with the device as the brittleness of the bones may lead to fracture, compression, and/or displacement and device malfunction.
Prior to surgery all patients will be checked for signs of infection. As the procedure is commonly done under local anaesthetic the patient will check into the hospital on the day of surgery and need not, in most cases, have fasted prior to the surgery. Some surgeons recommend a general anaesthetic in order to reduce the risk of movement during the procedure and the pre-surgical guidance will differ if this is the case. Arrangements should be made for the patient to be driven home after the procedure in any regard as driving is inadvisable for a short period after the surgery.
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