Overview This minimally-invasive procedure repairs a vertebral compression fracture. It helps restore the spine’s natural shape. Some patients experience rapid pain relief after the procedure.
Preparation Before the procedure, you are anesthetized. The physician guides a needle through the skin of your back and into your fractured vertebra. A special x-ray device called a “fluoroscope” helps the physician position the needle.
Balloon Inserted A balloon device is placed through the needle and into the vertebral body. The physician carefully inflates this balloon to expand the fractured bone. When the balloon is deflated, it leaves a cavity in the middle of the vertebral body. The balloon is removed. For some patients, more than one needle and balloon may be used.
Fracture Stabilized The physician injects bone cement through the needle. This cement fills the cavity. It hardens inside the vertebral body, stabilizing the fracture.
End of Procedure and Aftercare When the procedure is complete, the needle is removed. The opening in your skin is closed. Your doctor will give you instructions to aid your recovery.