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What is a Kyphoplasty?

Kyphoplasty are minimally invasive spine procedures designed to treat the pain and other symptoms of vertebral compression fractures. Vertebral compression fractures (compression fractures of the spine) most often are caused by osteoporosis, which is a weakening of the bones.

The kyphoplasty procedure involves the use of a balloon to restore the vertebral body height and shape. This is followed by bone cement to strengthen it. The procedure may be performed under intravenous sedation.

Why might I need a Kyphoplasty?

Doctors might recommend kyphoplasty for cancer-damaged vertebrae or certain spinal fractures. In most cases, a weakening of the bones (osteoporosis) has caused the vertebrae to compress or collapse, causing pain or a hunched posture.

The procedure has a high success rates for:

  • Stopping pain caused by fractures

  • Stabilizing the bone

  • Restoring some or all vertebral body height lost due to compression


What happens during the procedure?

  1. The procedure involves making a small incision behind the target area so that a narrow tube can be inserted into the fractured portion of the vertebrae.

  2. A special balloon is then inserted through the tube and inflated. This elevates the fracture, restoring a more natural shape, while also compacting the soft inner bone to create a cavity in the center of the vertebrae.

  3. After deflating and removing the balloon, a cement-like material is inserted into the cavity through a low-pressure injection. The material hardens quickly, stabilizing the bone.


What happens after the procedure?

Pain relief will be immediate for some patients. In others, elimination or reduction of pain is reported within two days. At home, patients can return to their normal daily activities, although strenuous exertion, such as heavy lifting, should be avoided for at least six weeks.

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