Dr. Finkenberg discusses how a woman should advocate for her health to ensure the best care following her kyphoplasty procedure (which is the restoring of the original height and angle of kyphosis of a fractured vertebra).
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Kyphoplasty is once you’ve determined that that’s an option in your care is best talked about with your primary physician as well as your specialist and what you need to determine is your degree of discomfort. Probably 75% to 80% of vertebrae fractures are interestingly semi-asymptomatic. In other words, people have pains that are chronic and is secondary to the degenerative disease and facet arthritis and small fractures basically are not noted. We picked them up as an incidental finding on a chest x-ray or an x-ray to the spine. But, there are that 20% of patients that do have these fractures after falls or some other type of acute injury. And once x-rays are taken and they are determined to be the cause or the pain generator, then I do think you need to talk with your physician about what your choices are. Most people don’t mind taking pain medication or analgesics for a few days to a week but prolonged use is obviously not acceptable. In addition to that, if you find out that you’re not able to do your normal daily activities and you’re immobile, we don’t want you to have a complications that goes along with that including creating an emboli and various other muscle atrophy. So, if certainly you are seen in the emergency room and this is found to be a problem rather than trying to treat this over a five to seven day hospitalization, having the procedure will certainly shorten that significantly and decrease your pain.

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