Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty

Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty

Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are similar procedures. Both are performed through a hollow needle that is passed through the skin of your back into the fractured vertebra. In vertebroplasty, bone cement (called polymethylmethacrylate) is injected through the hollow needle into the fractured bone. In kyphoplasty, a balloon is first inserted and inflated to expand the compressed vertebra to its normal height before filling the space with bone cement. The procedures are repeated for each affected vertebra. The cement-strengthened vertebra allows you to stand straight, reduces your pain, and prevents further fractures. Without treatment, the fractures will eventually heal, but in a collapsed position. The benefit of kyphoplasty is that your vertebra is returned to normal position before the bone hardens. Patients who’ve had kyphoplasty report significantly less pain after treatment

Who is a candidate?

Vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty may be a treatment option if you have painful vertebral compression fractures from:

  • Osteoporosis (a depletion of calcium in bones)
  • Metastatic tumor (cancer spread from another area)
  • Multiple myeloma (cancer of the bone marrow)
  • Vertebral hemangioma (benign vascular tumor)