New treatment method reduces pain in patients with vertebral compression fractures

July 22, 2009

Vesselplasty, a new minimally invasive procedure, increases mobility and reduces pain and the need for pain killers in patients with vertebral compression fractures (VCFs), according to a study performed at the Hospital Universitario Doctor Peset, Valencia, Spain. Vesselplasty is a new alternative to vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty -- two conventional VCF treatment methods. Vesselplasty solves the problem of leakage of cement out of the vertebral body which can happen during both vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty," said Lucia Flors, MD, lead author of the study.

The study included 29 patients with VCFs who underwent vesselplasty. "After the procedure, all patients had improvements in their pain scores; 93% of patients had improvements in mobility; and 62% of patients had a decreased need for pain killers," said Dr. Flors. There was no evidence of clinical complications following the procedure.

"Vertebral compression fractures often cause severe, disabling pain and progressive deformities of the in osteoporotic patients," she said.

"Vesselplasty is a safe alternative in the treatment of VCFs. It is an image-guided procedure that only requires conscious sedations and local anesthesia. Most patients refer improvement in their level of pain immediately following the procedure," said Dr. Flors.

This study appears in the July issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology.

Source: American Roentgen Ray Society

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