What is Kyphoplasty?
Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive medical procedure that can help relieve the pain and disability caused by vertebral compression fractures or severe back pain related to degenerative disc disease. It involves the insertion of a special balloon into the fractured vertebra, which is then inflated to create a cavity in the bone. Once this hollow area has been created, a polymer cement made from acrylic or methylmethacrylate (MMA) is injected into it. This solidifies within minutes to form a strong brace that helps restore height to the damaged vertebra and provides stability for increased spinal mobility. Kyphoplasty can be performed on both front and back parts of the spine, and generally takes less than two hours to complete.
Who Should Have Kyphoplasty?
Kyphoplasty is typically recommended to treat individuals who have vertebral compression fractures resulting from osteoporosis, tumors, or trauma. It can also be used to reduce pain and improve spinal mobility in those suffering from severe back pain related to degenerative disc disease. We may recommend kyphoplasty after you are unable to find relief with more conservative treatments such as medications or physical therapy.
How Well Does Kyphoplasty Work?
Kyphoplasty has been shown to be very successful in relieving pain and restoring mobility in those suffering from vertebral compression fractures. According to studies, kyphoplasty can reduce pain by up to 80 percent, and increase spinal mobility by up to 40 percent. In addition, the success rate of the procedure is estimated to be around 95 percent, making it an excellent option for those who qualify for this type of treatment.
What Can I Expect When I Have Kyphoplasty?
Kyphoplasty is perfomed in an OR, meaning you’ll come to the hospital and meet with your surgeon and anesthesiologist before the procedure, where they’ll discuss the type of anesthesia to be used. Before the actual procedure is performed, your doctor will use imaging technology such as X-rays or CT scans to identify the proper treatment area. Then the surgeon will make an incision in your back and insert a long, thin tube called a cannula. Through this device, they can then accurately place the balloon within the damaged vertebra. Once inflated, the cavity created by the balloon is filled with MMA cement to restore height to the bone and stabilize it for increased spinal mobility. The entire procedure takes less than two hours on average, and most patients are able to return home immediately afterwards.
You will need to generally rest for at least 1-2 days after kyphoplasty. Light activities such as walking, stretching and office work can usually be resumed within a few days of the procedure. You should avoid any strenuous activity until your doctor gives you approval to do so. This may take anywhere from 3-6 weeks depending on the severity of the injury and individual healing time.
It is also important to note that kyphoplasty does not guarantee complete pain relief in every case, especially if there are underlying issues such as arthritis or degenerative disc disease that have yet to be treated. Your doctor will be able to provide you with more information about the potential benefits of this procedure and how it can help improve your mobility and quality of life.