Kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty are two minimally invasive surgical procedures used to treat spinal fractures, particularly those caused by osteoporosis or trauma. Both procedures aim to stabilise the fractured vertebrae and relieve pain associated with the fracture.
Kyphoplasty is a procedure performed to treat compression fractures in the spine. It is typically used when the vertebra has collapsed or is significantly compressed. Here's an overview of the procedure:
- An incision is made in the back, and a small tube is inserted into the fractured vertebra under X-ray guidance.
- A special balloon is inserted through the tube and carefully inflated to create a cavity in the collapsed vertebra.
- Once the cavity is created, the balloon is deflated and removed, and the cavity is filled with bone cement.
- The cement hardens quickly, stabilising the vertebra and restoring its height.
The goal of kyphoplasty is to reduce pain, restore vertebral height, and improve the alignment of the spine. It can help improve mobility and overall quality of life for patients with compression fractures.
Vertebroplasty is another minimally invasive procedure used to treat spinal fractures. It is typically performed when the vertebra is fractured but not collapsed. Here's a general outline of the procedure:
- An incision is made in the back, and a small needle is inserted into the fractured vertebra under X-ray guidance.
- A bone cement mixture is injected directly into the fractured vertebra.
- The cement hardens rapidly, providing stability to the fractured vertebra.
Vertebroplasty aims to relieve pain caused by the fractured vertebra by stabilising it with the injected cement. It may also help restore some vertebral height, although it is not designed for significant height restoration.
Both kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty are usually performed under local or general anaesthesia on an outpatient basis. The procedures take around one to two hours per vertebra treated, depending on the complexity of the fracture. It's important to note that these procedures are typically reserved for patients who have severe pain or other significant symptoms related to spinal fractures. Dr. Rajesh Malhotra considers the patient's overall health and the extent of the fracture before advising patients to undergo kyphoplasty.