Zhi Chen, Chenyang Song, Hailin Lin, Jun Sun, Wenge Liu

June 2021, pp 1 - 7 Review Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-021-06899-w

First Online: 16 June 2021


In order to prevent the recurrent fracture after vertebral augmentation, the concept of prophylactic vertebral augmentation has been proposed, but its efficacy is still controversial. This study aimed to determine the efficacy of prophylactic vertebral augmentation for prevention of refracture in osteoporotic vertebral fracture patients.


Following PRISMA guidelines, a literature search was performed using PubMed, Embase and Web of Science databases for relevant studies published until February 2021. A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials and retrospective controlled trials comparing prophylactic group versus nonprophylactic group was conducted. The primary outcome was the incidence of new vertebral compression fracture (VCF), and secondary outcomes were incidence of adjacent vertebral fracture (AVF) and remote vertebral fracture (RVF).


A total of 6 studies encompassing 618 patients were included in the meta-analysis. The incidence of new VCF was reported in all six studies, and the result showed no significant difference between the two groups (OR: 0.509; 95% CI: 0.184–1.409). Four studies provided data on the incidence of AVF, and it was revealed that there was no significant difference between the two groups (OR: 0.689; 95% CI: 0.109–4.371). In view of the incidence of RVF, prophylactic group also did not differ significantly compared with nonprophylactic group (OR: 0.535; 95% CI: 0.167–1.709).


The current evidence suggested that prophylactic vertebral augmentation might not be appropriate to diminish the risk of new VCF. Therefore, there is a need to investigate the mechanism of refracture and explore other preventive regimens to reduce the risk.

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