Spine tumors can result in painful fractures called pathologic vertebral compression fractures (VCF). Compression fractures also are commonly caused by osteoporosis. These vertebral compression fractures cause extreme pain, which limits the possibility of normal movement or simple activities. With multiple fractures, kyphosis, a forward hump-like curvature of the spine may result.
Immediate Pain Reduction
In vertebroplasty, an Interventional Radiologist stabilizes the collapsed vertebra using image guidance to inject specially formulated acrylic bone cement through a hollow needle into the empty space within weakened vertebrae to strengthen them and provide pain relief.
In kyphoplasty, a balloon is inserted through the hollow needle into the fracture vertebra. It is inflated to create a cavity for the cement injection. The balloon is removed prior to the injection.
These are typically outpatient procedures (no hospitalization or surgery) and require only a local anesthetic. Most patients experience pain reduction within hours. Patients are usually able to resume their daily activities within 48 hours.
For more information on vertebroplasty, click here.
For more information on kyphoplasty, click here.