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Kyphoplasty for Vertebral Fractures

Kyphoplasty is a medical procedure similar to vertebroplasty, where special cement is injected into your vertebrae. What distinguishes kyphoplasty is the additional step of creating space for the treatment with a balloon-like device. This method can restore the height of a damaged vertebra and may alleviate pain.

Like vertebroplasty, the medical community still debates the effectiveness of kyphoplasty. It’s essential to consult with your doctor about the risks and benefits of this procedure.

Kyphoplasty might be suggested for vertebrae damaged by cancer or specific spinal fractures. Usually, these issues arise from osteoporosis, which weakens the bones, leading to vertebrae compression or collapse. This can cause pain or a hunched posture.

Here’s what you can expect before, during, and after the procedure:

Before the Procedure: At one of the Dallas Pain Institute Centers, your doctor will conduct an examination, possibly drawing blood for tests and utilizing x-ray or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to pinpoint the fractures.

During the Procedure: An anesthesiologist will administer medication through an IV to either ease your pain and help you relax or induce sleep. Guided by x-rays, your doctor will insert a needle into the bone through your skin and back muscles, then inflate a balloon to restore the vertebra’s shape. Next, your doctor will inject the cement, constantly checking the x-rays to confirm the correct placement. The needle will be removed without needing stitches. The entire procedure is typically under an hour, although it may take longer if additional vertebrae are treated.

After the Procedure: You will be moved to a recovery room. While you might go home on the same day, an overnight stay could be recommended. Walking might be possible an hour post-procedure. You may feel soreness at the needle’s entry point in your back, but this should subside within a few days. Relief from pain may be immediate post-surgery. Your doctor will guide you on activity restrictions and may advise certain vitamins, minerals, and medications to fortify your bones and prevent further spinal fractures.