Kyphoplasty is a relatively new treatment for the pain caused pressure fractures in the spine. Kyphoplasty is also effective in restoring height lost due to bone breakages in the vertebrae. During this procedure, the spinal surgeon makes a small incision near the fracture, and then uses temporary balloons to expand the space of the compression. The doctor then applies a fast-drying bone cement to restructure the broken vertebra. One of the main advantages of kyphoplasty compared to other types of vertebroplasty is that patients only need local anesthesia and one or two days in the hospital. In the US and UK, kyphoplastic surgery costs well over $40,000 or £27,000. In Latin America, spinal surgeons can perform this operation for much less.
In Mexico and Colombia, kyphoplasty costs about $20,000 or £13,000. Before the procedure, the doctor will take x-rays to determine the location and extent of the fracture. Then, while the patient is under local anesthesia and sedation, the doctor will repair the broken vertebral bone or bones. Spinal surgeons in Latin America use the same bone cementing materials that doctors in the US and UK use, and hospitals are equipped with the latest instrumentation. Many doctors in Colombia and Mexico have studied in the US an UK, and most medical professionals speak English. Patients will be attended by compassionate nurses and assistants who understand spinal care.
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