The Vault

Kyphoplasty Procedure
December 28, 2016
The Benefits of Kyphoplasty
January 2, 2017

Kyphoplasty and Associated Risks

Kyphoplasty is a procedure that provides treatment to a broken vertebra(e) of the spinal column. People who undergo the procedure are those that have vertebral fractures. Fractures in these bones can be a result of osteoporosis, which is a condition that involves thinning of the bones. Accidents are another leading cause of broken vertebrae. If a patient has cancer, he or she is prone to suffering from damaged vertebrae of the spinal column. Aside from experiencing pain and discomfort in the back, a patient may also suffer from nerve damage and bad posture.

Risks Involved in Kyphoplasty Procedure

When a back brace, pain medicine, or limiting activity does not work for a patient with spinal fracture, kyphoplasty is performed on a patient. Treatment of spinal fracture has its risks, and they include bleeding, infection, and increased back pain. The procedure which aims to treat broken vertebrae can cause a patient to experience numbness, weakness, or tingling in the back due to nerve damage. The procedure can lead to damage of the ribs or areas surrounding it.

The necessary steps taken before and during the actual kyphoplasty procedure can also have negative effects to a patient. For example, x-rays allow a doctor to put the balloons in the right place during the procedure, but its dyes can trigger allergic reactions. If a patient is pregnant, it is always essential to tell a doctor about it before undergoing the procedure. Other risks depend on a patient’s medical condition.

In general, a doctor would offer kyphoplasty along with vertebroplasty as treatment options for a fractured spinal column. Kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty are similar but different in one important way. The former involves inflating small balloon-like devices into the broken bone to make space for injection with cement, while the latter involves injection of cement directly into the damaged vertebra after some amount of physical manipulation, as determined by the surgeon.

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