Symptomatic Schmorl's nodes: role of percutaneous vertebroplasty. Open study on 52 patients

Neuroradiology. 2019 Apr;61(4):405-410. doi: 10.1007/s00234-019-02171-7. Epub 2019 Feb 18.


Purpose: To assess the feasibility and clinical outcome of combined CT and fluoroscopy-guided percutaneous vertebroplasty in the management of painful Schmorl's nodes (SN).

Methods: A prospective study was carried out from January 2014 to January 2016 in 52 consecutive patients. Thirty-two men and 30 women aged between 42 and 88 years old were consecutively included. Technical success was defined as the ability to deposit cement in the subchondral endplate anteriorly, around the SN and posteriorly to the SN, in a cupule-like shape. Data regarding procedure time, amount of cement injection, and cement leakage were also noted. Assessment of pain was performed with VAS score and Oswestry disability index. All patients underwent a clinical and radiological follow-up at 1 day, 1 month, 6 months, and 1 year after procedure.

Results: Technical success was 100%. Mean procedural time was 15 min, and mean injected cement volume was 2.8 mL. The VAS and Oswestry disability index decreased respectively from 7.2 ± 1.5 to 2.1 ± 1.0 and from 59.2 ± 16.2 to 17.1 ± 5.0 at 1 month. Follow-up mean VAS scores were 2.4 (± 1.4) at 6 months and 2.2 (± 1.2) at 12 months.

Conclusion: PVP appears as a feasible procedure in patients with painful SN with satisfying pain decrease in the following year after procedure.

Keywords: CT fluoroscopy guidance; Cementoplasty; Local anesthesia; Schmorl’s node; Vertebral fracture.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Fluoroscopy
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc Degeneration / diagnostic imaging*
  • Intervertebral Disc Degeneration / surgery*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Prospective Studies
  • Radiography, Interventional*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vertebroplasty / methods*