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What is Vertebroplasty?

What is Vertebroplasty

A fracture in the bones of the spine (vertebrae) can cause very strong back pain and loss of movement. Vertebroplasty is a procedure in which a type of surgical cement is injected into the fractured vertebra to make the spine more stable and to relieve back pain.

Treatment

The treatment of vertebral fractures has been mainly conservative. Pain has been treated with the help of narcotic analgesics such as morphine, physiotherapy and rehabilitation, bed rest and use of a corset.

Vertebroplasty

These are the steps of the procedure:

-You will be asked to put on a hospital gown and lie on an x-ray stretcher face down.

-Then, you will have an IV (intravenous) line to send you fluids and medications.

-You will be injected with local anaesthesia in the back to numb the area and then inject a needle there.

-The contrast medium will be injected into the area so that the needle and vertebrae look better on the x-ray. Using video radiographic images as a guide, the health care provider will take the needle to the vertebra that requires treatment.

-Cement-Like plastic material will be injected into the vertebra. This procedure is repeated on all the vertebrae that are necessary.

The entire procedure can take a few minutes, depending on how many vertebrae are being treated.

After the procedure

-You will be able to stand up and walk about 30 minutes after the procedure. It usually takes 10 minutes for the cement to solidify.

-It is very likely that you will be allowed you to go home within the following hours.

-You may feel pain at the puncture sites for the next 24 to 48 hours. To relieve that pain, use ice and pain relievers as directed.

-Drink plenty of water to help remove the contrast medium from your body.

-You should be able to return to your normal light activities in about 24 hours. You may have to wait several days or weeks for more vigorous activities.

Possible risks and complications

Risks and complications after vertebroplasty include:

-Bleeding.

-Infection.

-Rib or vertebra fracture.

-Irritation of surrounding nerves.

-Worsening pain.

-Problems related to the contrast medium, such as an allergic reaction or kidney damage.

-Cement leakage, which will require further surgery to remove it (very rare).

-Spinal cord damage (very rare).

 

You might also want to read: What is a Vertebral Compression Fracture?

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At the London Spine Unit, we have some of the best specialists to perform vertebroplasty. Book an appointment to get a checkup.

 

What is vertebroplasty?

Vertebroplasty is a procedure in which a type of surgical cement is injected into the fractured vertebra to make the spine more stable and to relieve back pain.

What is the treatment for vertebral fractures?

The treatment of vertebral fractures has been mainly conservative. Pain has been treated with the help of narcotic analgesics such as morphine, physiotherapy and rehabilitation, bed rest and use of a corset.

What are the risks of vertebroplasty?

Risks and complications after vertebroplasty include bleeding, infection, rib or vertebra fracture, irritation of surrounding nerves, worsening pain, problems related to the contrast medium, such as an allergic reaction or kidney damage, cement leakage, which will require further surgery to remove it (very rare), spinal cord damage (very rare).

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