Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are outpatient procedures for stabilizing compression fractures in the spine. Bone cement is injected into back bones (vertebrae) that have been cracked or broken, often due to osteoporosis. The cement hardens, stabilizing the fractures and supporting your spine.
Vertebroplasty involves the injection of a cement mixture into the fractured bone.
Kyphoplasty involves insertion of a balloon into the fractured bone to create a space that is then filled with cement.
Typically, vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are recommended after less invasive treatments, such as bed rest, a back brace, or pain medication, have been ineffective. Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty can be performed immediately in patients with severe pain.
Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are also performed on patients who are elderly or frail and will likely have impaired bone healing after a fracture, have vertebral compression due to a malignant tumor, and/or who suffer from osteoporosis due to long-term steroid treatment or a metabolic disorder.