, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 359-364
Date: 10 Jun 2009

Balloon kyphoplasty versus vertebroplasty for treatment of osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture: a prospective, comparative, and randomized clinical study

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Abstract

Summary

Bone pain and spinal axial deformity are major concerns in aged patients suffering from osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture (VCF). Pain can be relieved by vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty procedures, in which the compressed vertebral body is filled with substitutes. We randomly assigned 100 patients with osteoporotic compression fracture at the thoraco-lumbar (T-L) junction into two groups: vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty; we used polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) as the bone filler. Pain before and after treatment was assessed with visual analog scale (VAS) scores and vertebral body height and kyphotic wedge angle were measured from reconstructed computed tomography images. More PMMA was used in the kyphoplasty group than in the vertebroplasty group (5.56 ± 0.62 vs. 4.91 ± 0.65 mL, p < 0.001). Vertebral body height and kyphotic wedge angle of the T-L spine were also improved (p < 0.001). VAS pain scores did not differ significantly between the treatment groups. The duration of follow-up was 6 months. Two patients in the kyphoplasty group had an adjacent segment fracture. In terms of clinical outcome there was little difference between the treatment groups. Thus, owing to the higher cost of the kyphotic balloon procedure, we recommend vertebroplasty over kyphoplasty for the treatment of osteoporotic VCFs.

Introduction

Spinal axial deformities are major concerns in aged patients suffering from osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture. Pain may be relieved by vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty. We investigated the radiological and clinical outcomes of these procedures.

Methods

One hundred cases of VCF at the thoraco-lumbar junction were randomly assigned into two groups: vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty (50 cases each). We used polymethylmethacrylate as the bone filler. Pain before and after treatment was assessed with visual analog scale scores and vertebral body height and kyphotic wedge angle were measured from reconstructed computed tomography images.

Results

More PMMA was used in the kyphoplasty group than in the vertebroplasty group (5.56 ± 0.62 vs. 4.91 ± 0.65 mL, p < 0.001). Vertebral body height and kyphotic wedge angle of the T-L spine were also improved (p < 0.001). VAS pain scores did not differ significantly between the treatment groups. The duration of follow-up was 6 months. Two patients in the kyphoplasty group had an adjacent segment fracture.

Conclusions

In terms of clinical outcome there was little difference between the treatment groups. Thus, with the higher cost of the kyphotic balloon procedure, we recommend vertebroplasty over kyphoplasty for the treatment of osteoporotic VCFs.