So what are the non-fusion surgeries on lumbar spine?
These are essentially done for fractures, kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty. These are patients who have what you call a compression fracture. They have no breach posteriorly, sometimes we did do them on the patients who have breach also. But they have failed, they have not been getting better with a conservative measure, a conservative means.
This is putting a cement into a vertebral fracture. These patients mostly are osteoporotic. So putting the cement in one vertebrae is not the best answer sometimes. This is like egg shells and you have egg shells one over the other and then you put cement in one, what will happen to the others when they load on it?
This is hard, those will start breaking and these patients will have other level of compression fractures also. So it has to be a judgment call. Patient’s not getting better then we decide to do it otherwise most of the time we can treat them without surgery.
Read more about Vertebroplasty and Kyphoplasty here