Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure performed by an orthopedic surgeon. During the procedure, a balloon device gets inserted into a compressed vertebra. This balloon device restores the shape and height of the compressed vertebra. Once the vertebra has been restored, the balloon device is taken out and replaced with a cement-like material. This material stabilizes the vertebra and the spine becomes realigned.
If you have certain problems with the vertebrae in your spine, you may benefit from kyphoplasty. Before you schedule an appointment with an orthopedic spine surgeon, here are three things you should know about kyphoplasty.
1. Know the Spinal Conditions Kyphoplasty Treats
The spine is made up of a series of small bones called vertebrae. Like all bones in the body, vertebrae can become fractured. When a person has a vertebral compression fracture, they may have a humped back. This condition is called kyphosis. A vertebral compression fracture is usually caused by osteoporosis. Many women going through menopause are susceptible to osteoporosis, which means they are more likely to get vertebral compression fractures.
Another cause of vertebral compression fractures is metastasis. This happens when cancer cells spread to the vertebrae. Falls, accidents, or other events that put pressure on the spine can cause fractures as well.
2. Know About the Negative Side Effects of Kyphoplasty
Kyphoplasty is considered a very safe procedure. In fact, the risks for complications is less than 4 percent. However, any type of surgery has the potential for complications and negative side effects.
Some of these side effects include infection, abnormal bleeding, and a negative reaction to anesthesia. One potential complication with kyphoplasty is bone cement leakage. Other rare complications include worsening pain and paralysis. Some may also have an allergic reaction to the bone cement.
3. Know What Recovery Is Like Following the Procedure
The time it takes to fully recover usually depends on the overall health of the patient before the surgery. When it comes to kyphoplasty, most patients recover rather quickly. This is due to the fact that it is a minimally invasive procedure. In most cases, soreness in the back should go away within a few days of having the procedure.
Many people can continue doing their normal activities within one day. It is recommended, however, for patients to avoid heavy lifting or anything that causes strain on the back. To speed their recovery, patients who have undergone kyphoplasty should get plenty of rest. In order to reduce the chances of infection, they will also need to take good care of their incision.