Both kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty put special cement inside the vertebrae as a treatment method, but kyphoplasty is different, it uses a balloon-like device to create space for the treatment. Kyphoplasty may ease pain and can restore a damaged vertebra’s height. Patients with spinal fractures and cancer-damaged vertebrae may be advised by a doctor to get kyphoplasty as a treatment.
Kyphoplasty has certain risks, which include bleeding, infection, elevated back pain, and nerve damage that causes weakness, numbness, or tingling. Cement can also leak out of position during the procedure. Patients can also experience allergic reactions due to the chemicals that are used for the X-rays guiding the doctor during the procedure. It is important to note that there are other risks depending on the medical condition of patients. Patients should consult doctors to make sure that the treatment is the appropriate one.
Before the Kyphoplasty Procedure
The first step is examining a patient and locating the fractures using X-ray or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The patient may need to provide a blood sample for testing.
During the Kyphoplasty Procedure
Anesthesia will be given through an IV to make the patient relaxed and avoid pain. A patient could be sedated to a point that he or she is put to sleep. The doctor, with an X-ray to guide him or her, will use a needle to reach into the back bone and inflate a balloon so the vertebrae regain its normal shape. The doctor will then let the cement flow into the vertebrae while, as mentioned, being guided by X-rays to make sure it goes into the right place. Once it’s done, the needle will be removed. The procedure normally does not take an hour, but it could take longer if more vertebrae need treatment. Patients who have undergone the treatment will need to stay in a recovery room. The doctor will advise whether the patient can go home the same day or not.