Causes of Vertebral Fractures:
Vertebral compression fractures can be caused by osteoporosis, which thins bones and weakens the spine's structure and trauma. The symptoms of these fractures are often quite evident and present as severe pain – or numbness – in the back or extremities. However, the signs may be more subtle if the bone collapse is more gradual.
- Trauma from a Car Accident
- Fall from a Height
- High Impact Sports
Benefits of Vertebral Augmentation
Vertebral augmentation, such as vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty, offers several benefits for individuals with vertebral compression fractures, often caused by osteoporosis or trauma:
- Pain Relief: Swift and significant reduction in pain associated with vertebral fractures.
- Improved Vertebral Height: Kyphoplasty specifically aims to restore vertebral height, reducing spinal deformity and improving posture.
- Enhanced Mobility: Alleviating pain and restoring vertebral height can contribute to improved mobility and functionality.
- Prevention of Further Fractures: Reinforcing weakened vertebrae helps prevent subsequent fractures and vertebral collapse.
- Minimally Invasive: Both vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are minimally invasive procedures, reducing recovery time and potential complications.
- Quick Recovery: Patients often experience rapid relief and can resume normal activities shortly after the procedure.
- Stabilization of Fractures: The injected bone cement stabilizes the fractured vertebra, promoting stability and reducing the risk of further damage.
- Reduced Disability: Vertebral augmentation can contribute to a decreased level of disability associated with vertebral compression fractures.
While vertebral augmentation is effective, its appropriateness depends on individual health factors. Consultation with our New Jersey team can determine the best course of action based on the specific condition and needs of the patient.
We create a void in the affected vertebra during vertebral augmentation using a balloon catheter. This helps us to control and contain the delivery of the cement. After placement, the cement hardens and acts as a cast that stabilizes the internal structure, helping to alleviate the pain. The procedure has been shown in certain studies to result in effective pain relief for up to 80-90% of patients.
To learn more about whether you are a good candidate for this procedure, call our team today at (877) 595-9512. Our multidisciplinary team of vascular surgeons and vascular interventional radiologists can help you!
Frequently Asked Questions About Vertebral Augmentation
Who is a candidate for vertebral augmentation?
Candidates for vertebral augmentation are typically patients who have painful vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) caused by osteoporosis, cancer, or other conditions. Generally, candidates for vertebral augmentation have persistent pain that does not respond to conservative treatments such as pain medication, rest, and physical therapy. A thorough evaluation by Vascular Institute at AMI, including imaging studies such as X-rays or MRI, is usually performed to determine the suitability of the patient for the procedure.
What are the risks and complications associated with vertebral augmentation?
As with any surgical procedure, vertebral augmentation carries some risks and potential complications, which may include:
- Infection: There is a small risk of infection at the injection site or in the surrounding tissues.
- Bleeding: There may be bleeding during the procedure or in the surrounding tissues.
- Cement leakage: Bone cement used in vertebral augmentation can leak into surrounding tissues or blood vessels, which may cause nerve irritation, damage to organs, or embolism.
- Allergic reactions: Rarely, patients may experience an allergic reaction to the bone cement or other materials used in the procedure.
- Pain or discomfort: Some patients may experience increased pain or discomfort after the procedure, although this is usually temporary.
- Fracture in adjacent vertebrae: The increased stability of the treated vertebra may place additional stress on adjacent vertebrae, potentially leading to new fractures.
We will discuss the potential risks and complications prior to your undergoing vertebral augmentation in New Jersey. Contact us to learn more.
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