What Are the Risk of Kyphoplasty?


Quick Answer

The risks of undergoing kyphoplasty include a rise in the intensity of back pain, infection and complications that include leaking of the cement, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. Nerve damage during the surgery can cause numbness and weakness in the back.

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Full Answer

Although kyphoplasty is considered to be a safe procedure, it presents similar risks as other surgeries, asserts MedlinePlus. Kyphoplasty is used in the treatment of compression fractures, which often result in severe pain. The patient is given anesthesia before the procedure. During the surgery, the doctor inserts a needle containing a balloon into the spine. The balloon is inflated to correct the position of the spine bones. The doctor injects cement in the spaces created by the inflation of the balloon to keep the vertebrae in place. Patients are usually able to go home the day of the surgery.

Although the effects of kyphoplasty cause some controversy in the medical community, it is recommended for patients with debilitating pain or patients with cancer in the spine, states Johns Hopkins Medicine. Patients with osteoporosis or injured spine bones can benefit from kyphoplasty because the procedure can reduce the amount of pain medications that patients need and allow them to return to most of their day-to-day activities, claims MedlinePlus.

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