Kyphoplasty Indications and Contraindications

What is Kyphoplasty?

Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive medical procedure used to treat a condition called vertebral compression fractures (VCFs). VCFs are caused by a weakening of the bones in the spine, which can lead to pain, loss of height, and deformity. Kyphoplasty is a way to restore most or all of the height of the affected vertebra(e) and alleviate pain. Our surgeons specialize in this type of procedure, and our patients typically experience pain relief in as little as one week after the procedure, often sooner.

What is Balloon Kyphoplasty?

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Balloon kyphoplasty is performed by first making a small incision in the patient’s back, and then inserting a narrow tube called a cannula into the affected vertebra. Through the cannula, a small balloon is then inflated, which creates a cavity in the vertebra. The balloon is then deflated and removed. Then, a mixture of bone cement is injected into the cavity to stabilize the vertebra and restore its height. The balloon is used to create a space within the vertebral body, and then the bone cement is injected to fill the void, which helps to stabilize the vertebral body and reduce pain. The procedure typically takes about 1 hour to perform and is usually done under conscious sedation or general anesthesia.

The procedure is considered a safe and effective procedure for treating VCFs. It can provide immediate pain relief and improve the patient’s mobility and quality of life. It is also considered a better option for patients with osteoporosis and other brittle bone diseases because it does not require drilling or cutting of the vertebrae.

What Are Some Kyphoplasty Indications?

A kyphoplasty indication is a medical condition or symptom that makes the procedure a suitable treatment option. For example, kyphoplasty is typically indicated for individuals with vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) that are causing severe pain and/or neurological symptoms, such as numbness or tingling in the legs. Often this pain and numbness reduce mobility for patients to a significant degree.

The procedure is also often recommended for individuals who have not seen improvement with more conservative treatments such as physical therapy or pain medication. Additionally, kyphoplasty can also be used for patients with back pain due to osteoporosis, cancer, or trauma. However, your pain must be related to the vertebral fracture in order to be a candidate for kyphoplasty. Conditions like disc herniation, arthritis, or stenosis (narrowing) are not indications.

What Are Some Contraindications?

Kyphoplasty is considered a safe and effective procedure. However, there are certain contraindications, or reasons why this particular procedure should not be performed. The procedure is not recommended for individuals who have an active infection, a bleeding disorder, or a known allergy to the bone cement used in the procedure. In addition, kyphoplasty may not be the best option for individuals with certain medical conditions that make them poor candidates for surgery in general, such as severe heart or lung disease.

Can I Expect Immediate Relief After My Procedure?

Many patients experience pain relief almost instantaneously after their surgery, but some take longer to feel the effects, up to 48 hours. If you are not pain-free immediately after surgery, don’t worry. Every patient’s recovery process is unique.

While kyphoplasty has a high rate of success for patients, it is important to note that kyphoplasty is not a cure for the underlying condition that is causing the vertebral compression fractures. It is primarily a treatment for the pain and other symptoms caused by the fractures. Individuals who undergo kyphoplasty will likely need to continue to take measures to protect their bones, such as taking medications to strengthen bones, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise, and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.

Where Do I Go for Kyphoplasty in South Florida?

It’s important to consult with a medical professional before deciding if kyphoplasty is the right treatment option for you. If you are looking for kyphoplasty surgeons in West Palm Beach and the greater South Florida area, The Morrison Clinic’s six convenient locations are committed to helping you experience pain relief and regain your mobility — from first consult to out-patient procedure and after-care. Schedule an e-consult here to learn more about receiving care from one of the best neurosurgeons for kyphoplasty in West Palm Beach, Dr. John F. Morrison.