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spinal compression fractures


Fractures of the spine are common in older people with fragile, thinning bones, or osteoporosis. Because many patients do not realize that they have weakened bones, fractures may happen from a simple fall or other minor incident.


While some patients may have no pain as a result, the fracture or resulting spinal distortion can be very painful.

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Minimally invasive procedures

Interventional radiologists at Good Shepherd Hospital offer nonsurgical options to help patients with spinal conditions.

  • Kyphoplasty

Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure for compression fractures which occur in the vertebra, the small bones that make up the spinal column. 

A Good Shepherd Hospital interventional radiologist inserts a balloon through a needle into the fractured bone to restore the height and shape of the vertebra.  Advanced imaging is used to precisely guide the needle. A cement mixture is then inserted into the space created by the balloon to secure the shape of the spine. 

Kyphoplasty may be done as an outpatient procedure; often patients return home the same day. The medical team at Good Shepherd Hospital provides follow up care to support healing.

  • Vertebroplasty

Vertebroplasty is a similar nonsurgical treatment performed by an interventional radiologist using imaging guidance. In this procedure, the patient's vertebrae are stabilized by injecting medical-grade bone cement into the spine. Within approximately 15 minutes, the cement hardens to create a type of internal cast that supports the spine.

This procedure can improve back pain within hours of the procedure and provide long-term pain relief. 

I want to learn more about compression fractures and treatment

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