Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are similar minimally invasive surgical procedures aimed at relieving back pain caused by vertebral compression fractures and instability of the spine. Instability of the spinal column can occur as a result of an accident, falling from high heights, excessive trauma, or osteoarthritis; among others. Trauma that causes spinal instability can result in more pain and the risk of more severe injuries to your spinal cord, such as; vertebral compression fractures, burst fractures, or fracture dislocations.
If you’re suffering from back pain then vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty may be the optimal minimally invasive surgical procedure for you.
Vertebroplasty is a surgical technique that involves injecting low viscosity cement (aka:“bone cement”) into a fractured vertebrae. After the cement hardens the spinal column stabilizes, resulting in partial or complete elimination of pain. This procedure was developed in France in 1984 and was first introduced in the US in 1994.
Kyphoplasty is a form of vertebroplasty, and is a similar method of treating vertebral fractures. Kyphoplasty is so named because the procedure attempts to reduce the kyphosis that results from vertebral body collapse. During kyphoplasty an inflatable bone tamp or balloon is inserted to aid in restoring the original height of the vertebral body. Like vertebroplasty, kyphoplasty fills cavities with bone cement leading to increased stability and preventing the vertebra from re-collapsing.
When pain persists from compression fractures or similar trauma related injuries vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty are two procedures that may considered. Both procedures boast success rates over 90% of the time in decreasing or eliminating pain associated with vertebral compression fractures. However, in rare situations fusion surgery may be the most appropriate solution. The success of vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty is greater when performed within 2 months of the sustained fracture.