A review of vertebroplasty for osteoporotic and malignant vertebral compression fractures
Montagu, A., Speirs, A., Baldock, J., Corbett, J. and Gosney, M. (2012) A review of vertebroplasty for osteoporotic and malignant vertebral compression fractures. Age and Ageing, 41 (4). pp. 450-455. ISSN 0002-0729
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1093/ageing/afs024
Vertebral compression fractures are a common clinical problem and the incidence of them will increase with the ageing population. Traditionally management has been conservative; however, there has been a growing trend towards vertebroplasty as an alternative therapy in patients with persisting severe pain. NICE produced guidance in 2003 recommending the procedure after 4 weeks of conservative management. Recent high-quality studies have been contradictory and there is currently a debate surrounding the role of the procedure with no agreement in the literature. We examine the evidence in both osteoporotic and malignant vertebral compression fractures; we also describe the benefits and side effects, alternative treatment options and the cost of the procedure. Finally, we recommend when vertebroplasty is most appropriately used based on the best available evidence.