What is Balloon Kyphoplasty?
This is a minimally invasive treatment that can repair VCF (Vertebral Compression Fractures) caused by primary or secondary (steroid-induced) osteoporosis, cancer, or benign lesions. Orthopedic balloons are used as an attempt to elevate the bone fragments of the fractured vertebra and return them to the correct position. Balloon kyphoplasty has been shown to benefit patients with osteoporotic or cancer-induced VCF. Balloon kyphoplasty can be done under local or general anesthesia; your doctor will decide which option is appropriate for you. Typically, the procedure takes less than one hour per fracture treated and may require an overnight hospital stay.
How is the procedure performed?
With a hollow instrument, the surgeon creates a small pathway into the fractured bone. A small, orthopaedic balloon is guided through the instrument into the vertebra. Next, the balloon is carefully inflated in an attempt to raise the collapsed vertebra and return it to its normal position. Once the vertebra is in the correct position, the balloon is deflated and removed. This process creates a void (cavity) within the vertebral body. The cavity is filled with a special cement to support the surrounding bone and prevent further collapse. Generally, the procedure is done on both sides of the vertebral body.
After the procedure, you will most likely be transferred to the Recovery Room for about an hour. Generally, patients are discharged from the hospital within 24 hours. Your doctor will have you schedule a follow-up visit and explain limitations, if any, on your physical activity. After treatment with balloon kyphoplasty, mobility is often quickly improved. Most patients are very satisfied with the procedure and are able to gradually resume activity once discharged from the hospital.