Using a special x-ray machine, a bone needle is guided through the skin and into the fractured vertebra. A cement-like material called polymethylmethacrylate acrylic cement, called PMMA, is injected into the vertebra. The needle is removed and the cement hardens, stabilizing the vertebra.
Review Date 12/6/2017
Updated by: C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, San Francisco, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.