Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kyphoplasty for Malignant Compression Fractures

An interesting arcticle in the Lancet Oncology reporting a randomized trial on using kyphoplasty for malignant compression fractures.

What they show is that kyphoplasty pretty safe and effective, and I am encouraged by the fact that the interventional radiology literature on these sorts of maneuvers is improving with prospective and randomized evaluations of care. What it doesn't show is that it should replace RT in these situations, as the control arm was simply whatever care the treating physicians wished to deliver. The authors do skirt the subject of the downsides of RT in their discussion, suggesting that this could be a replacement, but I would view that with significant skepticism. I would instead look at these as complimentary treatments, as there is no doubt that kyphoplasty holds the promise of much more rapid pain relief, and RT actually treats the tumor responsible for the fracture in the first place.

No comments: