Journal List > J Korean Soc Spine Surg > v.22(2) > 1076079

J Korean Soc Spine Surg. 2015 Jun;22(2):65-68. Korean.
Published online June 30, 2015.
© Copyright 2015 Korean Society of Spine Surgery
Pulmonary and Renal Cement Embolisms During Balloon Kyphoplasty: A Case Report
Chung-Shik Shin, M.D. and Byeong-Yeol Choi, M.D.
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Presbyterian Medical Center, Jeonju, Korea.

Corresponding author: Byeong-Yeol Choi, M.D. Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Presbyterian Medical Center 365, Seowon-ro, Wansan-gu, Jeonju 561-750, Korea. TEL: +82-63-230-8744, FAX: +82-63-230-1439, Email:
Received December 05, 2014; Revised March 10, 2015; Accepted June 11, 2015.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Study Design

A case report.


To report a case of simultaneous pulmonary and renal embolisms after balloon kyphoplasty and review relevant literature.

Summary of Literature Review

Pulmonary or renal embolism caused by cement leakage during balloon kyphoplasty is a rare complication but can be fatal.

Materials and Methods

An 84-year-old female patient was treated with balloon kyphoplasty for an osteoporotic compression fracture. Pulmonary and renal embolisms were detected after the procedure and the patient was treated conservatively.


After conservative treatment, embolism-related symptoms were not found during the follow-up period.


We encountered a case of simultaneous pulmonary and renal cement embolisms which occurred during kyphoplasty. This is a very rare but potentially serious complication. However, the patient had no long-term sequelae after conservative treatment.

Keywords: Spine; Compression fracture; Pulmonary embolism; Renal embolism; Kyphoplasty


Fig. 1
The T1 weighted sagittal magnetic resonance (MR) image of the lumbar spine shows compression fractures at L2, 3 with decreased marrow signal intensity.
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Fig. 2
Sagittal T1-weighted MR image shows new adjacent vertebral fracture on L4 (arrow).
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Fig. 3
An immediate postoperative radiograph shows cement leakage into the paravertebral venous system and right lung area (arrow) but there's no obvious radiopaque material in the kidney.
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Fig. 4
Computed tomography (CT) demonstrates the presence of radiodense cement material in the segmental pulmonary arteries of the right posterior lung (arrow) (A) and in the renal vein and interlobar renal vein of the right kidney (arrow) (B).
Click for larger image

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