Relievant snags $30M for back pain surgical tool

California device company Relievant Medsystems has nailed $30 million in a Series D financing to accelerate clinical testing of a tool designed to treat lower back pain.

New Enterprise Associates led the round, along with previous investors Canaan Partners, Emergent Medical Partners, Morgenthaler Ventures and ONSET Ventures.

Relievant is in the process of enrolling 200 patients for the SMART trial, a prospective, randomized, double-blind, sham-controlled clinical study to evaluate how well its Intracept ablation system helps beat back chronic axial low back pain. The trial is designed to gather both safety and effectiveness data for the procedure and tool, which uses radiofrequency energy to do its job.

More than 12 million people seek treatment for back pain every year, according to the company. With that in mind, the company said it considers this trial and subsequent testing of the device crucial to its long-term plans.

"These studies are key drivers for our plan to continue advancing the utility of basivertebral nerve ablation for isolated axial low back pain and to successfully commercialize Intracept worldwide, CEO Alex DiNello said in a statement.

- here's the release