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Case Reports in Pulmonology
Volume 2013, Article ID 785307, 4 pages
Case Report

Pulmonary Embolism with Vertebral Augmentation Procedures

1Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Section, Department of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA
2Critical Care Services, University General Hospital, Houston, TX 77054, USA
3Acute and Continuing Care, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, USA
4The University of Texas Medical Branch, Houston, TX, USA
5Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, 1177 West Wheeler Avenue, Suite 1, Aransas Pass, TX 78366, USA

Received 7 October 2013; Accepted 19 November 2013

Academic Editors: I. Lang and J. Murchison

Copyright © 2013 Swetha Bopparaju et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


With the prevalence of an aging American population on the rise, osteoporotic vertebral fractures are becoming a common occurrence, resulting in an increase in vertebral augmentation procedures and associated complications such as cement leakage, vertebral compressions, and pulmonary embolism. We describe a patient who presented with respiratory distress three years following kyphoplasty of the lumbar vertebra. Computed tomography (CT) angiogram of the chest confirmed the presence of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) cement in the lung fields and pulmonary vessels. We conducted a systematic review of the published literature identifying effective management strategies for the treatment of vertebroplasty-associated pulmonary embolism.