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Vertebroplasty Specialist

Pinnacle Pain and Spine

Interventional Pain Medicine Physician & Interventional Pain and Sports Medicine Physician located in Scottsdale, Fountain Hills, & Chandler, AZ

Vertebral compression fractures are often treated with vertebroplasty, a minimally invasive procedure that strengthens the bone. You can depend on the expertise of double-board certified physician Matthew Crooks, MD, Jessica Byrd, FNP-C, AP-PMN, and Emma Dambi, FNP-C, at Pinnacle Pain and Spine. They have years of experience using vertebroplasty to ease back pain and restore mobility. If you have questions about your treatment options or need to schedule an appointment, call one of the offices in Scottsdale, Chandler, or Fountain Hills, Arizona, or use online booking today.

Vertebroplasty Q&A

What condition is treated with vertebroplasty?

Vertebroplasty is a minimally invasive procedure to treat vertebral compression fractures. Compression fractures occur when the bone is too weak to support the normal weight and stress supported by your spine. As a result, the bone collapses.

Osteoporosis is the primary cause of vertebral compression fractures. You develop osteoporosis when your bones lose calcium faster than your body can replace the mineral. The loss of calcium over time leads to weak, brittle bones.

Though not as common, vertebral compression fractures may also occur due to an infection, the presence of a tumor, or following spinal trauma.

What symptoms indicate I may need vertebroplasty?

The first symptom that usually appears is sudden back pain. Though a vertebral compression fracture can occur anywhere in your spine, it most often affects the vertebrae in your upper back or thoracic spine. 

Standing or moving makes the pain worse, while lying down tends to ease some of the pain. You may also have limited spinal movement.

When multiple adjoining thoracic vertebrae suffer compression fractures, you may lose height or develop a rounded back, a condition called kyphosis.

What happens during vertebroplasty?

Vertebroplasty is an outpatient procedure that’s typically done with a local anesthetic and conscious sedation. Using real-time X-ray guidance, Dr. Crooks inserts a small needle into the collapsed disc.

Once the needle is in place, he injects a specially formulated bone cement. The cement quickly hardens, strengthening and stabilizing the vertebra. As your spine regains the support of the vertebra, your pain improves.

Am I a good candidate for vertebroplasty?

After Dr. Crooks examines your back and takes diagnostic images, he can determine if vertebroplasty is an option for you. Most patients with a vertebral compression fracture are good candidates for this procedure.

You may not qualify for vertebroplasty if:

  • Your vertebral compression fracture has completely healed
  • More than 80-90% of the vertebra collapsed
  • You have spinal curvature due to something other than osteoporosis
  • You have neurological symptoms caused by another condition
  • You have discitis or osteomyelitis

If you have questions about upper back pain or want to learn more about vertebroplasty, call Pinnacle Pain and Spine or use the online booking feature today.