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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2003 May;180(5):1411-7.

Percutaneous vertebroplasty: treatment of painful vertebral compression fractures with intraosseous vacuum phenomena.

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Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Singapore General Hospital, Outram Road, Singapore 169608.



This study was undertaken to determine the efficacy of percutaneous vertebroplasty in treating patients with painful compression fractures of the thoracic and lumbar vertebrae that contain intraosseous vacuum phenomena.


Nineteen cases of painful vertebral compression fractures with intraosseous phenomena occurring in 18 patients (six men, 12 women; age range, 59-88 years; mean age, 75.5 years) were identified from 393 percutaneous vertebroplasties performed in 199 patients during 32 and a half months. All patients had osteoporosis, with severe vertebral compression to less than one third of the vertebral body height in 13 of 19 cases. Affected levels were T6 (n = 1), T8 (n = 2), T9 (n = 1), T11 (n = 1), T12 (n = 4), L1 (n = 5), L2 (n = 2), L3 (n = 1), L4 (n = 1), and L5 (n = 1). All cases had the typical intravertebral body vacuum cleft appearance on radiographs. Imaging and clinical features were analyzed.


The mean volume of polymethyl methacrylate injected was 7.43 mL (range, 4.0-15.0 mL). Typically, the polymethyl methacrylate filled the intravertebral vacuum cleft. Complications during radiography consisted of minimal polymethyl methacrylate leakage into the adjacent disk (15/19 cases) and the paravertebral soft tissues (8/19 cases). No complications required surgical intervention. At clinical follow-up, pain relief was complete in eight patients (44.4%), partial in six patients (33.3%), and unchanged in four patients (22.2%).


Percutaneous vertebroplasty is effective in the treatment of patients with painful vertebral compression fractures with intraosseous vacuum phenomena.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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