Balloon Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive treatment in which orthopaedic balloons are used to gently raise the collapsed vertebra in an attempt to return them to the correct position. Before the procedure, you will have diagnostic studies, such as x-rays and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), to determine the exact location of the fracture.

The benefits of Balloon Kyphoplasty include:

• Significant reduction in back pain
• Significant improvement in quality of life
• Significant improvement in mobility
• Significant improvement in ability to perform activities of daily living

As with any surgery, there are potential risks. Although Balloon Kyphoplasty is designed to minimize these risks as much as possible, there is a chance that complications could occur. Be sure to discuss the possible risks with your doctor. Also, please note that not all patients are candidates for Balloon Kyphoplasty.

How it works:

Step 1: Balloon Placement

With a hollow instrument, a narrow pathway is made into the fractured bone. A small orthopaedic balloon is guided through the instrument into the vertebra. The incision site is approximately 1 cm in length.

Step 2: Full inflation

Next, the balloon is carefully inflated in an attempt to raise the collapsed vertebra and return it to its normal position.

Step 3: Void created within the vertebral body

Once the vertebra is in the correct position, the balloon is deflated and removed. This process creates a void (space) within the vertebral body. The void functions as a “container” for the bone cement.

Step 4: Filling the cavity with cement

The void is filled with bone cement to stabilize the fracture.

Step 5: Internal cast

The cement forms an internal cast that holds the vertebra in place. Generally, the procedure is done on both sides of the vertebra.

After the procedure

After the procedure, you will be transferred to the Recovery Room for about an hour. A specially trained nurse will monitor your condition and assess the degree to which your back pain has been alleviated. During your hospital stay, you will be encouraged to walk and move about. Generally, patients are discharged from the hospital within 24 hours. Your doctor will have you schedule a follow-up visit and explain limitations, if any, on your physical activity. After treatment with Balloon Kyphoplasty, mobility is often quickly improved. Most patients are very satisfied with the procedure and are able to gradually resume activity once discharged from the hospital.

After the procedure, the patient should return to the osteoporosis-treating physician for medical management and follow-up.