What is percutaneous vertebroplasty (PVP)?

Updated: Nov 12, 2019
  • Author: Gaurav Gupta, MD; Chief Editor: Justin A Siegal, MD  more...
  • Print


Vertebroplasty is an image-guided therapy in which a cement, a fast-setting polymer, is injected into a pathologic vertebral body. The purpose of this procedure is to relieve pain and disability. It can be used in the setting of painful osteoporotic compression fractures, pathologic fractures from underlying neoplasms, or structurally compromised vertebrae. It has been used for osteoporotic or malignant fractures. The procedure was first described by Galibert et al [1] who found that the “internal casting” provided by polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) injected into a symptomatic vertebral hemangioma provided substantial pain relief.

With clinical experience and landmark innovation, other indications have emerged. Vertebroplasty can increase patient mobility, decrease narcotic needs, prevent further vertebral collapse resulting in altered forces on intervertebral discs, and avoid the complications associated with prolonged immobility.

Percutaneous vertebroplasty (PVP) usually involves percutaneous injection of PMMA into the vertebral bodies. Occasionally, PMMA has also been placed manually into vertebral lesions during open surgical operations.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!