Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Vertebroplasty
In the mid 1980s, vertebroplasty became the first minimally invasive spine procedure used as a vertebral compression fracture treatment. Vertebroplasty is a procedure in which liquid low-viscosity bone cement is injected into the affected vertebra to stabilize the fracture and relieve the pain.

Considerations
Vertebroplasty as a minimally invasive spine procedure is not without its limitations. Cement leakage– asymptomatic and symptomatic – from the injection site and/or fractured areas of the vertebra before stabilization can prove problematic, resulting in nerve irritation and potential embolisms, or blood clots. Approaches to the vertebral body were limited to bipedicular techniques, and cement viscosity offered limited working time. Physicians also had to work in close proximity to radiation (x-rays).

Balloon Kyphoplasty
First available in 1998, Balloon Kyphoplasty, (referred to as vertebral augmentation) was seen as an improvement over vertebroplasty because the use of a balloon to compact and crush the bone reduced the likelihood of cement leakage. This procedure was also the first minimally invasive kyphosis treatment to attempt to address the issue of vertebral body height loss as a result of vertebral compression fractures. Like vertebroplasty, balloon kyphoplasty uses a predominantly bipedicular (two access points into the vertebra) approach to the vertebral body.

Considerations
While an improvement over vertebroplasty, Balloon Kyphoplasty continues to have shortcomings in vertebral augmentation procedures. Many physicians acknowledge that height restoration is inconsistent and not a primary endpoint as a result of balloon inflation. Also of concern is indiscriminate damage to intact cancellous bone when inflating the balloon, the inability to create targeted cavities for the bone cement to fill, the use of larger, more invasive needles to reach the treatment site, the inability to control cement delivery, and unnecessary exposure to harmful radiation (x-ray).

Overcome limitations of conventional procedures with RF-TVA™ to achieve rapid and lasting back pain relief for patients.