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Are You Suffering A From Spinal Compression Fracture?

Dr. Clinton Thome, MD and Idaho Pain Clinic is eager to announce offering a much needed and effective procedure to those suffering from back pain. Dr. Thome joined Dr. Ispirescu and the Idaho Pain Clinic just over a year ago after Dr. Thome completed his training and become double board certified in Anesthesiology and Pain Management. As the clinic and patients have grown in the last year, it became clear that the vertebral augmentation procedure known as Kypohoplasty/Vertebroplasty was something Idaho Pain Clinic needed to offer. Doctor Thome was trained in this procedure during his fellowship in San Antonio, Texas and has since undergone additional advanced training in this minimally invasive procedure.

The clinic recently decided to expand its services to include offering Balloon Kyphoplasty and Vertebroplasty as an option to treat vertebral (spinal) compression fractures and the subsequent pain and decreased mobility associated with these fractures. Idaho Pain Clinic currently offers spinal cord stimulation, epidural steroid injections, joint injections, platelet rich plasma, rhizotomy, medication management, chiropractic care, massage therapy and physical therapy services, so for the clinic the addition of Kyphoplasty and Vertebroplasty are an obvious next step.

In the United States alone there is an average of 700,000 documented compression fractures of the spine each year. Spinal compression fractures are more common than wrist or hip fractures. So why do wrist and hip fractures almost always receive medical care and often surgical interventions compared to compression fractures? Despite the vast number of spinal fractures each year, only 30% get medical attention. That is in part because the signs are overlooked by the patient or can often be misdiagnosed as muscle strains or sprains. Patients are often prescribed bracing, physical therapy or bedrest when in reality there is something far more serious than a strain or sprain causing their symptoms.

It is important for people to know the signs of spinal compression fracture which include sudden onset of back pain without an obvious acute explanation. The report or experience of loss in height, kyphotic posture (hunchback position), chronic protruding abdomen, altered gait presentation including decreased walking speed and poor balance, gastric distress, frailty, decreased physical function, decreased quality of life and chronic low back pain.

Patients need to know that if they do have a spinal compression fracture then chances of experiencing improved pain, function, quality of life and even the risk of mortality are greatly improved if they undergo Balloon Kyphoplasty or Vertebroplasty versus conservative treatment. In fact, conservative management has limited effectiveness as compared to vertebral augmentation which consist of injecting a bone cement into the fractured vertebra to stabilize it. The balloon technique known as Kyphoplasty is used to restore the hight of the bone while injecting the bone cement.

Recent studies have found this minimally invasive procedure decreases the mortality rate by up to 43% compared to conservative management. Of 68,752 hospital admitted medicare patients with compression fractures, those that received the procedure compared to conservative treatment were in the hospital an average of 3.64 less days following admission, were more likely to discharge to home and were 27% less likely to return to the hospital in the thirty days following initial admission.

Vertebral compression fractures can often occur in those patients with history of cancer including breast, prostate, lung, bladder and is even reported to occur in a quarter of patients with multiple myeloma. The great news is that this procedure offered through Idaho Pain Clinic is safe with this population.

The team at Idaho Pain Clinic would like the community to know that their clinic is ready and more than capable to offer the minimally invasive Kyphoplasty and Vertebroplasty procedure to the patients they serve. A combination of signs during a physical examination in addition to the presence of edema (swelling) in the vertebral bodies as seen on x-ray indicates that a patient may very well be an excellent candidate for this procedure.

If you have any questions about Kyphoplasty/Vertebroplasty or any of the services offered at Idaho Pain Clinic you are encouraged to call the clinic at: 208-263-9757 and visit them online at:

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