Kyphoplasty is a procedure to help patients with vertebral compression fractures of the spine. These fractures often form because of osteoporosis, traumatic injury, or spinal tumors. Mild fractures can be treated with braces, rest, and medication. Cases with severe pain and limited motion may need surgery.
With kyphoplasty, a needle is inserted into the compressed vertebra, and a balloon tamp is inserted. The balloon is inflated, raising the vertebra to its normal height. The area is then injected with bone cement to keep the vertebra raised and keep the compression from reoccurring.
Patients will need to rest and not do any heavy lifting or intense activity after surgery. Pain can last up to two weeks after surgery but should diminish. Healing can take 4-6 weeks, and most parents report a significant reduction in pain after the procedure. In rare cases, complications can arise from the surgery, including infection, bone cement leakage, and nerve damage.