Fractures of the vertebrae are common with osteoporosis. In some cases, the pain caused by the fracture can be severe enough to require medical intervention. Not all vertebral fractures require surgical procedures as they generally heal on their own, but in some cases, your doctor might advise a kyphoplasty. Here is what the procedure entails and how it can help your fracture.
The Benefits Of Kyphoplasty
This treatment is done to help relieve the pain of an osteoporotic fracture in the spine. It involves injecting bone cement into the fractured area, so the vertebra is lifted back into its normal position. This can provide pain relief and reduce the effect that fractures can have on changing the shape of your spine. Because of these benefits, kyphoplasty can improve the quality of your life since you can stay active and mobile rather than being in bed suffering from back pain.
The Kyphoplasty Procedure
The kyphoplasty procedure is minimally invasive. You won't need a large incision, and you probably won't have general anesthesia. Instead, you may have sedation through an IV along with a local anesthetic given in your back. The doctor only makes a small incision on your back so a tube can be inserted through your skin to reach the fractured vertebra.
When the tube is in place, the doctor inserts a balloon through it and places the balloon in the fractured area. As the balloon inflates, your vertebra is raised to its original position. Then, the balloon is removed and bone cement is injected into the opening that was created by the balloon. The cement hardens into a strong bone-like material that holds the vertebra in its new shape so it can support your spine properly.
The doctor views the entire procedure on a monitor, so he or she knows exactly where to position the balloon and cement. Depending on your general health and how well you tolerated the procedure, you might go home after spending a short time in the recovery area, or you might stay the night in the hospital.
Kyphoplasty is one treatment for an osteoporosis fracture, but your doctor also has other treatment options to consider. If you're having sudden back pain and think you might have a fracture, be sure to let your doctor know so the appropriate treatment can be started as soon as possible to increase your comfort. Treatments might include pain medication, physical therapy, wearing a back brace, or a surgical procedure.
Contact a medical office like Radius for more information and assistance.