Spine surgery sham - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Spine surgery sham


A common procedure to relieve back pain or to treat a spinal fracture may not work any better than a sham procedure.

Two studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine compared vertebroplasty, a procedure in which cement is injected in the spine to relieve pain and improve function, to a sham procedure.

Researchers found patients who underwent both procedures had similar levels of pain relief and improvement in function after surgery.

They say this doesn't mean vertebroplasty doesn't work - they say improvements could be from local anesthesia, sedation and patient expectations.

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