Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Vertebroplasty improves back pain, activity level

30.12.2005


A Mayo Clinic study has found patients report less back pain at rest and while active following vertebroplasty, a procedure in which medical cement is injected into painful compression fractures in the spinal vertebrae due to osteoporosis. Patients also reported improved function in their daily activities, such as walking, housework and getting dressed. The findings are published in the November/December issue of American Journal of Neuroradiology.



"These findings give us as good evidence as there is -- in a study without a group receiving another or no treatment for comparison -- that patients are more functional for up to a year after vertebroplasty than before vertebroplasty," says David Kallmes, M.D., the Mayo Clinic neuroradiologist who led the study.

The investigators conducted the study to assess vertebroplasty with a well-validated questionnaire specifically designed to measure back pain, the Roland-Morris Disability Questionnaire (RDQ). They reviewed records of 113 Mayo Clinic vertebroplasty patients. Of this group, RDQ scores were available for 108 patients before vertebroplasty treatment, and after treatment for 93 patients at one week, 73 patients at one month, 46 patients at six months and 15 patients at one year. Patients’ pain during rest and activity improved an average of seven points one week after treatment and remained improved one year following vertebroplasty. Prior to treatment, the average RDQ score was 18 on a scale of 23. The RDQ dropped to an average score of 11 immediately after treatment and remained at that level throughout the study.


Dr. Kallmes explains that in light of the wide practice of vertebroplasty for vertebral compression fractures, a study using a top-caliber back pain measurement tool like the RDQ was critical, especially in light of the often subjective nature of pain reporting by different patients.

"It’s hard to remember your pain," he says. "Also, it’s hard to say how bad my pain is compared to your pain. I’ve had patients say their pain is no better after treatment, yet I look at them and they look 10 times better."

Dr. Kallmes explains that ultimately, vertebroplasty needs evaluation through a study of the highest quality, a clinical trial in which patients are randomly assigned to receive treatment or no treatment and in which the patients and investigators are blinded to which patients receive the real treatment or a placebo used for comparison.

"Vertebroplasty has been promulgated by physicians who performed the procedure without quantifying the benefit," he says. "Yet, medical literature is rife with studies that have debunked therapies that are already in use."

Dr. Kallmes is making strides toward high-quality measurement of vertebroplasty. Currently, he is leading an international, multicenter study looking at whether the cement used in vertebroplasty is responsible for the pain relief reported by patients. Patients in this study are randomly assigned to receive treatment with the real cement used in vertebroplasty or a placebo.

Patients for whom vertebroplasty is appropriate, according to Dr. Kallmes, have osteoporosis or a similar condition and have suffered compression of their spines with no or minimal injury. For example, while bending over to tie their shoes or turning over in bed, patients’ vertebrae may fracture because their bones are weakened due to osteoporosis. Each year, 700,000 people suffer this injury. For four out of five patients, the fracture heals and the accompanying pain goes away in approximately four weeks with bed rest and analgesics. However, for one in five patients, the fracture does not heal and the pain persists, requiring treatment. Surgery is not an option for these patients, as their bones are too weak. Vertebroplasty is the only available treatment option for patients in this condition.

Vertebroplasty is not appropriate for patients with back pain due to ligament injuries, joint disease or narrowing of the spinal canal, says Dr. Kallmes.

Lisa Lucier | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mayo.edu
http://www.ajnr.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

nachricht Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

What the world's tiniest 'monster truck' reveals

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Treating arthritis with algae

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Witnessing turbulent motion in the atmosphere of a distant star

23.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>