Spinal Compression fractures might be caused by bone tumors, trauma to the back, or damage from osteoporosis. If untreated, they can lead to back pain, nerve damage, trouble walking, a stooped posture, or loss of height. In extreme cases, patients may be confined to a bed.
Kyphoplasty is a procedure used for treating spinal compression fractures. The procedure stabilizes the bone, which essentially involves gluing the fractured bone fragments back together, reduces pain, and allows a speedy return to an active lifestyle.
At Injury Medicine, our pain management specialists have extensive experience performing kyphoplasty in Greenville, SC. If you have been diagnosed with a spinal compression fracture, you should contact us today at 864-866-PAIN today to set up an appointment with our doctors to find out whether is right for you.
What Is Kyphoplasty?
Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive surgical procedure primarily used for treating spinal compression fractures caused by conditions that leave bones weak such as osteoporosis. The procedure takes its name from the word kyphosis, which refers to the natural forward curvature of the top of the spine. The procedure is typically used when more conservative methods fail to relieve pain.
How Does Kyphoplasty Work?
The procedure works by injecting bone cement into a fractured vertebra directly. A balloon is first inserted into the fracture to expand the space before the cement is added. The cement quickly hardens and acts like an internal cast.
The following is a more in-depth explanation of how the procedure works and what to do or expect before, during, and after kyphoplasty.
- A member of the Injury Medicine team in Greenville, SC will contact you before the day of the procedure and provide instructions on how to prepare and what time you should arrive.
- If you’re on any medications, consult with your doctor about taking them before the exam. Specifically, if you are taking blood thinners or have diabetes, you will need instructions from your doctor.
- If you’re instructed to take your medications, do so with sips of water.
- You shouldn’t eat during the 8 hours prior to the procedure. You are allowed to drink clear liquids but avoid milk and orange juice.
- You will be required to wear comfortable clothing.
- You will first be placed on a table on your stomach.
- Our doctors will examine you to locate the fractures.
- You will then be given an injection of antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection.
- Our doctors will then administer a sedative intravenously as well as a local anesthetic for the purpose of numbing the area around the affected vertebra. The sedative will make you drowsy but won’t put you to sleep.
- Our doctors will then use a special X-ray machine known as a fluoroscope to ensure proper needle placement and optimal cement deposition.
- Our doctors will then inject the cement while checking the fluoroscope to make sure that it is going to the right place.
- Our doctors will then remove the needle, with no stitches required.
- If just one vertebra is being treated you can expect the procedure to take about one hour. If multiple sites have to be treated, however, the procedure will likely take longer.
- You will then be taken to a recovery room and asked to lie still for about 6 hours after the procedure.
- Most patients are able to go home the day of the procedure. However, people that live at a distance from Injury Medicine may need to stay in a hotel overnight and those with other medical conditions or who are particularly frail may be kept overnight for observation.
- The area around the injection site in the back may be sore for a few days after the procedure. You can use an ice pack for 15 minutes every hour to help with the pain. Use a cloth to ensure that the ice or cold pack doesn’t touch your skin directly.
- The bandage on the wound should be kept on for several days. You can take a shower with the bandage on, but keep the area around the wound clean.
- Our doctors will instruct you on whether to avoid any activities after the procedure.
- You should have instructions from your doctor about restarting any of the medications that you stopped for the procedure.
- Your doctor may suggest taking certain minerals, vitamins, and medications to help strengthen your bones and prevent additional spinal fractures.
What Are the Risks of Kyphoplasty?
Kyphoplasty is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure that results in reduced pain and improved quality of life. However, as is the case with any interventional procedure there’s the potential for risks and complications, which may include:
- Bone Cement Leakage: A slight possibility exists that bone cement may leak along the outside of the needle into the surrounding soft tissues. It can also happen when the needle is removed from the vertebra.
- Nerve Damage: Any operation on the spine carries the risk of damage to the spinal nerves or cord, which may cause numbness or paralysis.
- Paralysis: It is an extremely rare complication that may occur in a variety of ways during kyphoplasty if the nerve root or spinal cord becomes damaged.
- Pulmonary Embolism: If bone cement finds its way into a vein in the vertebra, it could potentially end up in the lung causing an artery obstruction.
- Allergic Reaction to Bone Cement or Other Agents: It is also possible to have an allergic reaction to one of the agents used in kyphoplasty, such as the bone cement or the solution that makes the balloon visible on the fluoroscope.
The risks of kyphoplasty, however, are significantly reduced when it is done by trained and experienced physicians such as those at Injury Medicine using X-ray guidance. Our pain management specialists have a lot of experience performing the procedure.
Why Choose Injury Medicine for Kyphoplasty in Greenville?
At Injury Medicine in Greenville, SC, we firmly believe in a comprehensive approach to spine pain care. We treat each of our patients as individuals with personalized treatment and therapy to achieve their personal goals.
Here are the top 3 reasons why Injury Medicine, SC is the place to go for Kyphoplasty in Greenville, SC:
Our doctors work closely with pain control specialists and interventional radiologists to provide compassionate, quality care. Each one is certified and extremely skilled in fighting pain. Spine surgery involves working on some of the most delicate parts of the body. Our highly skilled surgical team, with years of experience in spinal procedures, such as kyphoplasty, will take expert care of you and help you return to doing the activities you enjoy.
Minimally Invasive Procedures
Kyphoplasty is the option we recommend most for patients with spinal compression fractures. It is a minimally invasive surgery that provides an alternative to regular surgical procedures when other treatment methods have failed to produce the desired results. Kyphoplasty offers faster recovery times and fewer complications.
We have a duty to our patients to do everything we can to treat spinal-related pain. Our facility in Greenville, SC is capable of handling even the most complex cases. Our doctors are highly specialized and focused on eliminating pain and getting patients back to pain-free living.
Is Kyphoplasty Right for You? Call Us to Find Out!
Kyphoplasty has the potential to improve your quality of life and mobility as well as reduce pain and the use of pain relief medication. If other treatment options have not been working for you, the capable medical team at Injury Medicine in Greenville, SC can recommend kyphoplasty for your pain.
Call us today at 864-866-PAIN to schedule your appointment.