Osteoporosis Treatment for Back Pain and Broken Vertebra
August 29th 2005
Approximately 700,000 spinal bone fractures occur each year. They
usually occur in women over the age of 60. Usually the treatment has
required the patient to wear a back brace. The patients were also given
powerful narcotics to dull the pain.
Loss of movement has also accompanied spinal bone fractures.
These vertebrae fractures have been more difficult to manage than
broken bones in the hip or elsewhere. When a bone is broken in the
hip and elsewhere surgical and non-surgical treatments have been available.
new treatment for fractured vertebrae has been accessible the past few
years and presents new hope. There are questions as to how the new
treatment works. Vertebroplasty (ver-TEE-bro-plasty) according to the
Society of Interventional Radiology has been “shown to be extremely
effective in reducing or eliminating the pain caused by spinal
non-surgical treatment performed using imaging guidance by
interventional radiologists, stabilizes the collapsed vertebra with the
injection of medical-grade bone cement into the spine. According to the
Society it has helped to relieve pain and prevented further collapse.
It has been used to treat vertebral compression fractures that were
unresponsive to conventional medical therapy.
becoming so common the New York Times has brought up some very important
questions. What exactly does the treatment do? It is possible that the
hot cement merely destroys the nerve endings, removing the pain. or patients experience a placebo effect.
It has been pointed
out that vertebroplasty could be harmful. By shoring up one vertebrae,
adjacent ones may be more likely to break.
In 2002 a group of
researchers received a federal grant in hope of answering some of these
questions. The group has run into a problem: Few patients with
severe pain are willing to enter the trial. They fear being given
In 18 months so far
only three patients have enrolled. Some 27,000 vertebroplasties have
been performed in 2004. The number has skyrocketed since 2001 when only
14,000 were performed. Medicare will cover the procedure.
If you have a comment or article please submit it
We received this comment:
I am a 58 yrs old male, sever osteoporosis with
collapsed L1, L2, L3 L4 L5.I was on constant medication of Morphine
which at times didn't control the pain. I had this procedure on
Friday 16th Oct in Staffordshire, England. The operation took some 2hrs
30 mins, and after 45 minutes of coming out of the operating theatre was
pain free, and able to get out of bed without any aid. I was discharged
24 hours later. Alan Bennion-Rowe
By Dan Wilson
Best Syndication Staff Writer
Keywords and misspellings:
vertebreplasty vertebra vertebre vertebrae