Kyphoplasty is a procedure performed to relieve pain from compression fractures of the spine by stabilizing the broken vertebral bone with a cement-like substance. Compression fractures can occur from a variety of conditions, including to osteoporosis, tumors or trauma.

What to Expect Before Kyphoplasty

Once you have decided to have surgery, the following events take place:

  • A medical examination.
  • Chest X-ray, EKG and blood work.
  • You may be asked to have a neurological or psychological examination.
  • If taking aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications daily, stop these medications at least one week before the lumbar fusion surgery.
  • Do not have anything to eat or drink for 6 to 8 hours before surgery.
  • You will check into the hospital the morning of surgery.
  • Prior to the procedure, you will be asked to sign permits for surgery, anesthesia, blood and blood products.

What to Expect During Kyphoplasty

  • Your doctor may numb the area, or you may get medicine to make you sleep.
  • The doctor makes a small cut in your back and puts a balloon device into the fractured vertebra.
  • The doctor inflates the balloon and then deflates it.
  • Then he or she puts a substance that works like cement into the space created by the balloon.
  • It takes 1 to 2 hours to treat each vertebra.

What to Expect After Kyphoplasty

  • You will be in the recovery room from 1 to 1½ hours.
  • The surgeon will contact your family while you are in recovery.
  • After going to a hospital room, you will be able to use a PCA pump to get medication for pain control. This machine controls the amount of medication that can be received.
  • Staff will usually get you out of bed the same day as the surgery.
  • The hospital stay is usually 1-3 days.
  • You will be given any needed prescriptions and discharge instructions.