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Med Clin (Barc). 2013 Feb 2;140(3):115-8. doi: 10.1016/j.medcli.2012.07.027. Epub 2012 Nov 28.

[Effectiveness of vertebroplasty in painful chronic osteoporotic vertebral fractures. A report of 5 patients].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

  • 1Servicio de Reumatología, Hospital Clínic, Universidad de Barcelona, Barcelona, España.



Percutaneous vertebroplasty (PVP) has been successfully used in the treatment of pain related to osteoporotic vertebral fractures refractory to medical therapy, especially in the treatment of acute factures. However, the effectiveness of this therapeutic approach in the treatment of painful chronic vertebral fractures is less clear.


In this report we evaluate the short and long-term effectiveness in pain relief of PVP in a group of 5 patients with pain related to chronic osteoporotic vertebral fractures without bone marrow edema (BME) on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). All patients were followed during one year, assessing analgesic use, pain evolution (on a 10-point visual analog scale [VAS]), new vertebral fractures and other clinical complications. Seven procedures were performed in the 5 patients.


All patients reported substantial improvement in back pain 2 weeks after the procedure, with a mean decrease of 53% in the VAS. However, one year after PVP most patients (4 out 5) worsened, achieving similar VAS scores to those obtained at baseline. No additional vertebral fractures or other clinical complications were observed.


The present cases suggest that the long-term effectiveness of PVP in the treatment of painful chronic vertebral fractures without BME on MRI is scarce.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.

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