What are the goals of surgical treatment of osteoporotic fractures?

Updated: Sep 26, 2019
  • Author: Monique Bethel, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

The goals of surgical treatment of osteoporotic fractures include rapid mobilization and return to normal function and activities. Traditional operative management of vertebral compression fractures is uncommon and is usually reserved for gross spinal deformity or for threatened or existing neurologic impairment.

Operative interventions include anterior and posterior decompression and stabilization with placement of such internal fixation devices as screws, plates, cages, or rods. Bone grafting is routinely performed to achieve bony union. The failure rate of spinal arthrodesis is significant because achieving adequate fixation of hardware in osteoporotic bone is difficult. Moreover, patients who are elderly have a reduced osteogenic potential.


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