Osteoporosis is a metabolic bone disorder. It occurs as a consequence of reduced bone density. It is mainly diagnosed in older women. This disease most often occurs at menopause. The bones become more porous, brittle and break easily. Spinal fractures can also occur. We are successfully treating this problem at Atlas General Hospital. The surgeon, who successfully operates on such conditions, explains that patients come with unbearable pain, due to which they cannot walk. Medicine has advanced, so we are in a situation to solve vertebral fractures that create constant pain. They can be treated in a very safe way for patients.
Dr. Milenko Savić: “ Today there is a very elegant and efficient operation for vertebral fractures, the so-called vertebroplasty. Vertebroplasty is an operation that solves a fracture of the spine in awake patients, without a classic incision. ”
Patients are, in most cases, elderly. In addition to osteoporosis issues, they have some other chronic diseases. Therefore, anesthesia can be a problem. However, for this intervention, local anesthesia is used, which is completely safe. Doctor Milenko Savić explains how he performs the intervention.
What is the procedure for vertebroplasty?
Dr. Milenko Savić: “ The patient is lying on the stomach, on the operating table. An X-ray finds and marks a vertebra that is broken. Special needles are placed in the vertebrae, which have a canal through which cement is injected. These needles enter the vertebrae through the skin. The needles are brought to a position that is appropriate, then cement is injected into the broken vertebra. In this video, you will see that the vertebra was broken before the intervention, its height was barely one third of a normal vertebra. After the cement was injected, at the end of the intervention, the vertebra was lifted. Now it is almost half normal, in addition to the fact that the vertebra is cemented, strengthened, now its height has been corrected. ”
Advantages of vertebroplasty:
- Minimally invasive
- One-day surgery
- Fast, painless and efficient
- Permanent solution of vertebral fracture
- Local anesthesia
- Safe intervention
- Surgery without incision
- Provides pain relief
How safe is vertebroplasty (injecting cement into the fractured bone)?
People are still very afraid of spine surgery. Dr. Milenko Savić, one of our greatest experts in this field, claims that we should not be afraid of spine surgery.
Dr. Milenko Savić: ” Vertebroplasty is absolutely safe. There is no risk of any damage. Vertebroplasty is performed under X-ray control at all times. We have a clear picture at all times. We see where the needle is, so the possibility that the needle is in a bad position or that cement is leaking somewhere is ruled out. It is also important that patients are not placed under any anesthesia. There is no risk of complications of anesthesia because only local anesthesia is used. The intervention is short, so there is no risk of lying down too long, bleeding or having wounds. It’s a minimally invasive procedure. ”
After vertebroplasty surgery
Fifteen minutes after the operation, patients can get up, the pain is gone. The vertebral fracture is permanently resolved.
Are there any restrictions after surgery?
Dr. Milenko Savić: “ Patients live completely normally after the intervention. When I say normal, I mean what is appropriate for those years. Of course, sports and physical activities are not recommended, but they will live exactly the same as before this problem and they would not wear a belt any more. Since these are mostly female patients, carrying a load is not allowed and otherwise carrying a load is not recommended for anyone diagnosed with osteoporosis. There are no restrictions other than those listed. ”
Although this method is being performed in the world for some time, it is new in Serbia.
Dr. Milenko Savić: ” In Serbia, this procedure is just being introduced into clinical practice. Most doctors, I would say, do not know all the possibilities and advantages of this method. Patients of course, even less. In part, this conversation is intended for patients and colleagues who are not in spinal surgery. First of all to rheumatologists and physiatrists, who can meet with such patients and recommend that only vertebroplasty is the way to directly solve the consequences of osteoporosis. ”
This operation is performed at Atlas General Hospital. According to Dr. Milenko Savić, it would be best to introduce it in clinical practice in Serbia and to become the standard in the treatment of spinal fractures in osteoporosis.
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