How to Prepare for a Vertebroplasty & Kyphoplasty

A evaluation including diagnostic imaging, blood tests, a physical exam, spine X-rays and a radioisotope bone scan or magnetic resonance (MR) imaging will be done to confirm the presence of a compression fracture that may benefit from treatment with vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty.

You may be given bone-strengthening medication during treatment.

You should report to your doctor all medications that you are taking, including herbal supplements, and if you have any allergies, especially to local anesthetic medications, general anesthesia or to contrast materials (also known as "dye" or "X-ray dye"). Your doctor may tell you to stop taking aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or a blood thinner for a specified period of time before your procedure.

Women should always inform their doctor and X-ray technologist if there is any possibility that they are pregnant. Radiation is not good for the fetus. If an X-ray is necessary, precautions will be taken to minimize radiation exposure to the baby.

On the day of the procedure, you should be able to take your usual medications with sips of water or clear liquid up to three hours before the procedure. You should avoid drinking orange juice, cream and milk.

In most cases, you may take your usual medications, especially blood pressure medications. These may be taken with some water in the morning before your procedure.

You may be instructed to not eat or drink anything for several hours before your procedure.

You will need to have blood drawn and tested prior to the procedure to determine if your blood clots normally.

You should plan to have a relative or friend drive you home after your procedure.

You will be given a gown to wear during the procedure.