08 Dec Kyphoplasty as an Opioid Alternative
Kyphoplasty is a type of outpatient surgery for patients with a spinal compression fracture, and it’s a specialty of Integrated Pain Consultants. If you’ve heard about the opioid epidemic and are wary of taking addictive prescription drugs, kyphoplasty might be an excellent alternative for you. The relatively fast procedure requires no overnight stays and can help with a variety of spinal compression fracture causes from vertebrae damage caused by cancer to a number of spinal fractures.
Kyphoplasty might be an option if you’re tried other more conservative treatments for back pain and haven’t enjoyed enough relief. Nobody should live with moderate to severe pain. However, the longer a patient suffers, the more likely they are to reach for stronger, and sometimes dangerous, drugs. If you’ve been thinking about opioid treatment, talk to your health team at Integrated Pain Consultants and see if kyphoplasty is right for you.
The Surgery You’ve Never Heard Of – Kyphoplasty
Kyphoplasty, a spinal procedure, uses bone cement. This special and safe material is directly injected into compressed, fractured, cracked, and/or collapsed vertebrae for fast and permanent pain relief. However, just like most approaches, the key term is “pain relief” and not “painkiller.” In some cases, it’s impossible to completely stop pain. Even opioids and opiates simply block the brain from registering pain that still exists. These drugs aren’t an actual “fix” but rather a way to minimize pain in the short term while the body is healed in other, long-lasting ways.
Kyphoplasty vs Balloon-Assisted Vertebroplasty
You may have heard of kyphoplasty being called “balloon-assisted vertebroplasty.” The bone cement used is a type of acrylic that’s medical-grade. The procedure includes a board-certified anesthesiologist to ensure patients feel no pain during the procedure. A live x-ray, or fluoroscopy, is used for optimum guidance. Next, your doctor inserts a needle with the bone cement into the damaged area, creates a “balloon” or room for the cement, and applies the product.
Kyphoplasty mimics a vertebroplasty in some ways. However, the balloon can cause an uptick in vertebral height or length. It usually takes less than 30 minutes for the entire procedure, and most patients notice immediate pain relief upon waking. Only your doctor can say if you’re a good candidate for kyphoplasty, but common conditions that are treated include spinal fractures or trauma, osteoporosis, bone cancer leading to a damaged vertebra, and compression fractures.
If you want to avoid or stop opioid treatment for back pain and find out if kyphoplasty is for you, contact Integrated Pain Consultants at 480-626-2552. We also invite you to learn more about Dr. Nikesh Seth and other providers including Dr. Anne-Marie Cosijns, Dr. Lisa Sparks, Dr. Michael Givens, and our team of Nurse Practitioners.