Always first the person, with correct diagnosis, appropriate treatment, emphasizing the Minimally Invasive Techniques
Osteoporotic Fractures – Metastatic Fractures
Vertebral compression fractures that
occur in areas affected by osteoporosis are called
osteoporotic spine fractures.
Primary cancers are associated with the
appearance of metastases in the spine.
They are minimally invasive, safe and
effective operations performed by a specialized
orthopedic, a spine surgeon for the treatment of
spinal fractures in older people.
Osteoporotic fractures of the spine
Osteoporosis is a chronic condition characterized by a decrease in bone density and quality, increasing the risk of fractures.
Fractures of the vertebrae that occur because of osteoporosis are called osteoporotic spine fractures.
A significant characteristic of these fractures is that they occur spontaneously or as a result of minimal energy injuries (e.g. same height falls).
Fractures of the spine caused by osteoporosis are a measurable factor of morbidity but also of the deterioration of patients’ quality of life worldwide.
Facts shows that about one in five people aged 50 and over will develop an osteoporotic spine fracture during their lifetime, and this probability increases with age.
In addition, the presence of spine fractures caused by osteoporosis in a patient increases the risk of developing new osteoporotic spine fractures 4-5 times compared to the general population, something that should be evaluated for the treatment and monitoring of these patients.
The goal of therapeutic treatments in patients with osteoporotic spine fractures is the rapid and safe return to daily activities, with the ultimate goal of regaining the previous level of quality of life.
Currently, the most modern and safest way to treat osteoporotic spine fractures is with percutaneous, minimally invasive spine techniques.
These techniques, consisting mainly of vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty, are performed under local anesthesia and controlled sedation.
In addition, they present important advantages such as short duration of the surgery, the minimal intraoperative hemorrhage, short hospital stay of the patients – patients leave the hospital within 4-5 hours after the intervention, significant reduction of pain, but also a quick return to daily activities.
Therefore, the treatment of patients with osteporotic spine fractures with modern and minimally invasive techniques is now possible and as it is scientifically proven to lead to improvement of pain, functionality and overall quality of life of patients.
Metastatic tumors and fractures of the spine
Metastatic lesions are the most common type of spinal tumors, accounting for 90% of all spine cancers.
The primary cancers that are associated with the occurrence of metastases in the spine are in order of frequency those of the breast, lung, prostate gland, kidney, gastrointestinal tract and thyroid gland.
A notable feature of metastatic cancers of the spine is that they can expand to an extent up to 20% in the spinal canal and compress the spinal cord and/or nerve roots, resulting in muscle weakness, sensory disturbances and/or urinary/fecal incontinence in suffering patients.
The majority spine metastases are characterized as osteolytic, as they disrupt the normal architecture of vertebral bone tissue by impairing bone strength.
This results in an increased possibility of fractures occurring, which can occur spontaneously or as a result of low-energy injuries (e.g., same height falls).
Facts show that this probability ranges from 8-25%, depending on the characteristics of the primary tumor.
In any case, the predominant clinical feature of patients with metastatic spine fractures is the pain that progressively worsens and does not subside with conventional conservative methods and usually causes a serious reduction of the quality of life of patients on a functional and psychosocial level.
The therapeutic goals in patients with the presence of metastatic fractures of the spine are basically the remission of pain, the structural stabilization of the spine, the maintenance of the neurological function and the maintenance of a high quality of life of the patients.
Given the fact that there are no other clinical conditions such as instability or complicated severe fractures with compression of the spinal cord and/or nerve roots present, the treatment of metastatic fractures of the spine can be performed with modern, bloodless and minimally invasive techniques.
These surgical techniques, represented by vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty, provide structural stabilization of the spine and pain reduction which is clinically proven.
In addition, it is of most importance that these techniques can be performed under local anesthesia and controlled sedation, with additional benefits such as short surgery duration, minimal tissue injury and intraoperative hemorrhage and rapid discharge of patients (usually 4-5 hours after surgery), and improving of patients’ quality of life.
Therefore, the treatment of severe pain and impaired function of patients with metastatic spine fractures is now possible through safe, minimally invasive and innovative techniques, which ultimately lead to an improvement in the quality of life of patients in the context of their palliative care.