You’ve been diagnosed with a vertebral compression fracture. Your back pain is unremitting; it doesn’t matter if you’re resting or walking — your back hurts. Sometimes people recover from this type of fracture without surgery, but you may not be one of them.
Our board-certified orthopedic surgeons with MidJersey Orthopaedics treat many patients with spinal compression fractures at our three New Jersey locations. You’re in safe hands. To relieve your pain, we may recommend a kyphoplasty.
What is a kyphoplasty?
A kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive surgical procedure to relieve pain from a vertebral compression fracture and restore the height of your damaged vertebra(e). It’s important to restore as much height as possible to the bone to ensure normal curvature of your spine and alleviate your pain.
Why do I have a compression fracture?
If you have osteoporosis, you’re at risk of a compression fracture. Your bones have lost some of their strength. They’ve become more porous, which makes them break more easily. Cancer treatment can also cause weakened vertebrae.
What happens during a kyphoplasty?
You’ll receive IV sedation or general anesthesia for the kyphoplasty. The target area is shaved and sterilized. You’re lying face down so that your doctor can reach the target area on your back.
Your surgeon inserts a needle into the bone in your spine using X-ray guidance to ensure the correct placement. He then inserts an instrument called a balloon tamp through the needle and moves it into the damaged vertebra. Next, the balloon is inflated, which creates an empty space.
After removing the balloon tamp, your doctor injects acrylic bone cement into the space created by the balloon. The cement fills the space and restores much or all of the height of the vertebra. It’s made to be strong, so the vertebra won’t collapse again.
A kyphoplasty usually takes about one hour, although it may be longer if more than one vertebra is being treated. Your significant other or a friend must drive you home.
We provide written instructions for postsurgical recovery. You’ll need to take it easy for a few days before resuming your normal schedule. You won’t be able to do strenuous exercise or lift any heavy objects for about six weeks.
Does a kyphoplasty limit my mobility?
Absolutely not. You’ll likely see significant relief within a few days of the procedure. If you’ve had severe back pain, you can look forward to the following benefits of a kyphoplasty:
- Greatly reduced back pain
- Vertebra restored to normal height
- Great improvement in mobility
- Better ability to perform normal activities and take care of your personal needs
- Improved quality of life
Call MidJersey Orthopaedics or book an appointment online for expert treatment of your back pain and for all of your musculoskeletal needs.