Vertebroplasty

Vertebroplasty is a minimally invasive procedure performed in cases of collapsed vertebrae to reduce or eliminate the associated pain.

Goals of Vertebroplasty

  • To stabilize compression fractures in the spine

  • Relieve the associated pain

  • Prevent further collapse of the vertebra

  • Prevent further deformity (such as spine curvature and/or loss of height)

  • Increase patient mobility

  • Decrease narcotic needs

Indications for Vertebroplasty

  • Collapsed vertebra

  • Spinal fractures

  • Vertebral compression fracture

  • Osteoporotic fracture

  • Malignant fracture

  • Spinal tumors

Vertebroplasty procedure

Vertebroplasty is a minimally invasive procedure performed in outpatient setting under local anaesthesia to stabilize the compression fractures in the spine. Through a small puncture in patients skin, a biopsy needle is guided into the fractured vertebra under high pressure and X-ray guidance. Acrylic bone cement is injected into the fractured vertebrae to fill the space within the bone. The cement hardens, stabilizing the fractures and supporting the spine. The needle is removed and skin puncture is covered with a bandage.

Recovery from Vertebroplasty

As soon as the cement hardens, most of the patient can go home but are advised not to drive. Some patients may need a short stay in the hospital.

Bed rest is advised for the first 24 hours after vertebroplasty and within this period patient experiences 90% reduction in the pain and increased ability to perform daily activities. But patient is advised to gradually increase the level of activities each day rather than start performing strenuous activities soon after the surgery. Patient may experience some soreness for a few days at the puncture site which is relieved with an ice pack.