Osteoporosis takes its toll on your body by causing reduced bone mass. Vertebral fractures almost always result from bones of the spine collapsing due to osteoporosis. Dr. Mikhail Solomonov of Pain Management and Anesthesiology of NJ in Cedar Knolls, New Jersey, uses cutting-edge minimally invasive surgery to treat these fractures and minimize their impact. Call today or book an appointment online for your consultation.
The spine is the major support column for the body, comprised of vertebrae stretching from the head to the pelvis. When the bones of the spine become weakened by osteoporosis, the loads and ranges of motion that were once handled easily may now exceed the weight-bearing capability of the individual vertebrae.
Normally, bone is in a constant renewal process in the body. Old tissue is replaced with new bone. When osteoporosis hits, the rate of bone renewal slows and falls behind the rate of loss. Bone becomes more porous and more prone to fracture and collapse.
There are usually no signs or symptoms accompanying osteoporosis until a bone fails, which may occur under surprisingly gentle conditions. Vertebral fractures are typically a type of compression fracture brought on by osteoporosis.
When new back pain comes on suddenly, a vertebral fracture is a possible cause, particularly if you’re older and at risk of or diagnosed with osteoporosis.
Standing or walking typically make the pain worse, while lying down on your back usually provides relief.
You may notice less spinal mobility, such as the ability to twist side to side.
You may not be as tall as you were previously, and physical deformities may develop.
Dr. Solomonov prefers kyphoplasty surgery whenever possible to treat vertebral fractures. This minimally invasive procedure aims to reduce or relieve back pain, restore proper spinal alignment, and prevent further deterioration or collapse of the fracture.
The kyphoplasty procedure typically uses two small incisions, less than ¼-inch each, through which tubes access the affected vertebrae. Specialized X-ray imaging permits precise placement of the tubes to observe the progress of the surgery. Balloons are placed in the vertebrae and filled to restore the bone to its original profile.
As the balloons are removed, bone cement is inserted into the spaces created. This cement hardens in minutes, permitting you to stand and walk once the effects of anesthetic wear off.
After several days, your need for pain medication should drop dramatically, and if physical therapy is recommended, you can begin this in two weeks.
A similar procedure, the vertebroplasty, works in much the same way, but without the balloons to restore the original shape of the vertebrae.