Nevro hits Boston Sci with patent infringement suit

Nevro's Senza spinal cord stimulation system relieves back and leg pain without the tingling sensation known as paresthesia. Image: Nevro

Almost exactly a year ago, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office dismissed Boston Scientific’s challenges to Nevro’s patents for its spinal cord stimulation tech. Now, Nevro is hitting back, filing a patent infringement suit against Boston Sci.

Nevro filed the suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, the company announced this week. It is claiming that Boston Sci is infringing patents related to Nevro’s Senza SCS system and HF10 therapy, Nevro said in a statement. The lawsuit is pursuing damages and attorney’s fees in addition to “preliminary and permanent injunctive relief” against further infringement, Nevro said.

Boston Scientific challenged one of Nevro’s patents soon after the Senza system won pre-market approval in May last year. The Patent and Trademark Office ultimately threw out Boston Sci’s petitions for inter partes review in November for failing to show the patent was invalid.

At the time, Leerink analyst Danielle Antalffy said the outcome "will likely make in increasingly difficult" for Boston Sci to market its own high-frequency device.

"Intellectual property is the basis for innovation in health sciences given the long development timelines, investment and risk required to bring meaningful advances to market. We are committed to ensuring continued innovation in health sciences by protecting our intellectual property,” said Nevro CEO Rami Elghandour in the statement.

Nevro’s Senza system earned FDA approval in May last year for the management of chronic pain in the trunk and/or limbs. The device delivers high-frequency stimulation at 10 kilohertz and, in doing so, does not cause paresthesia, a tingling sensation that often comes with traditional spinal cord stimulation. The FDA also allowed the company to market the device as “superior” to other SCS systems.