Kyphoplasty and Vertebroplasty
What is Vertebroplasty?
Before the procedure is performed, you will be sedated but still awake. It can be done in an x-ray suite or in an operating room. The procedure starts with you laying face down on a table. This allows for improved vertebral alignment, especially when compared to the way your vertebrae would align if you were standing and had an unstable or acute fracture.
X-ray machines are used to guide a thin needle/cannula into the vertebra. Then a cement specially designed for bones is injected into the fracture. It takes about 10 minutes for the cement to harden, solidifying the fragments of fractured vertebra and giving you stability and pain reduction.
During the procedure, the doctor will not manipulate your vertebra. They will simply place the bone cement into the fracture site to give stability.
What is Kyphoplasty?
In most cases, this procedure is performed with general anesthesia. In some instances, the doctor may opt to use a local anesthesia, but that is rare.
This procedure begins with you lying face down on an operating table. Then a balloon catheter that is comparable to the balloon catheter used in angioplasty is carefully placed in the vertebra. The doctor will use an x-ray machine to guide the balloon catheter. Once in place, a pressurized liquid inflates the balloon.
Vertebra that have collapsed as a result of fractures are restored to their proper place. Once the balloon has been inflated, it is deflated and removed. The space that the balloon made between the vertebra is filled with a bone cement.
As the cement hardens, it keeps the vertebra in its proper position and prevents collapses and wedging.