Osteoporosis International

, Volume 21, Issue 9, pp 1599–1608

Cost-effectiveness of balloon kyphoplasty in patients with symptomatic vertebral compression fractures in a UK setting

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00198-009-1096-6

Cite this article as:
Ström, O., Leonard, C., Marsh, D. et al. Osteoporos Int (2010) 21: 1599. doi:10.1007/s00198-009-1096-6



Balloon kyphoplasty (BKP) is a procedure used to treat vertebral compression fractures (VCFs). We developed a cost-effectiveness model to evaluate BKP in United Kingsdom patients with hospitalised VCFs and estimated the cost-effectiveness of BKP compared to non-surgical management. The results indicate that BKP provides a cost-effective alternative for treating these patients.


VCFs of osteoporotic patients are associated with chronic pain, a reduction in health-related quality of life (QoL) and high healthcare costs. BKP is a minimally invasive procedure that has resulted in pain relief, vertebral body height-restoration, decreased kyphosis and improved physical functioning in patients with symptomatic VCFs. BKP was shown to improve health-related QoL in a 12-month interim analysis of a randomised phase-III trial.


The objectives of this study were to develop a Markov cost-effectiveness model to evaluate BKP in patients with painful hospitalised VCFs and to estimate the cost-effectiveness of BKP compared with non-surgical management in a UK setting. It was assumed that QoL-benefits found at 12 months linearly approached zero during another 2 years, and that patients receiving BKP warranted six fewer hospital bed days compared with patients given non-surgical management.


The procedure was associated with quality-adjusted life-years (QALY)-gains of 0.17 and cost/QALY-gains at £8,800. The results were sensitive to assumptions about avoided length of hospital-stay and persistence of kyphoplasty-related QoL-benefits.


In conclusion, the results indicate that BKP provides a cost-effective alternative for treating patients with hospitalised VCFs in a UK-setting.



Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.i3 InnovusStockholmSweden
  2. 2.Medical Management CenterKarolinska InstitutetStockholmSweden
  3. 3.Medtronic LtdWatfordUK
  4. 4.Royal National Orthopaedic HospitalStanmoreUK
  5. 5.MRC Epidemiology Resource CentreUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK
  6. 6.Institute of Musculoskeletal SciencesUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  7. 7.StockholmSweden