How to Treat Osteoporosis


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Updated: 11/16/2012 4:11 pm Published: 11/15/2012 4:18 pm


Dr. James Webb specializes in both radiology and musculskeletal imaging. A Tulsa native, Dr. webb focuses on pain management and osteoporosis. "We do bone density testing, prescribe medications for osteoporosis and treat patient with fractures to get them pain free," he said.

Spine fractures from osteoporosis can be treated with Kyphoplasty. "Kyphoplasty is a procedure that is done as an outpatient under light sedation, Dr. Webb said. "The procedure involves placing a needle into the fractured vertebrae, reducing the fracture with a balloon and stabilizing it with bone glue—basically an internal cast for osteoporotic fractures. The procedure has a high success rate, about 95% when treated in the first year, but older fractures also respond at about an 80% success rate." A person who's had heart disease, emphysema, etc might be turned down for this procedure at a hospital. Dr. Webb's office uses a mild sedation and therefore high risk patients can have the procedure, he said. "The first difference is experience. This is a fairly common procedure; however, it is usually done in the hospital setting by a doctor that does one or two per month. I have personally performed thousands of kyphoplasties and typically do 10-20 per month," he said. 

"I provide comprehensive osteoporosis management. We are the only place in Tulsa that will perform your kyphoplasty to get rid of your pain AND medically manage the osteoporosis causing it. A lot of places say they do that, but in actuality they don’t," he said. 

"At most places if you have a fracture and it’s treated with kyphoplasty, that’s it. You go back to your PCP and that it," Webb said. "That sounds good because the pain is gone, however, when you have one vertebral fracture, studies show that increases your risk of another fracture 5x, a second fracture and it increases to 12x more likely. So if they aren’t treating you for osteoporosis, you’re a ticking time-bomb. It’s not a question of if, but when you’ll have another fracture," he said. "So, at the Osteoporosis Institute, if you have a spinal fracture, we not only treat the fracture itself, but we aggressively treat the underlying osteoporosis that causes the fracture, to help decrease your future fracture risk," Dr. Webb said. "I started at one of the other radiology groups and this is a reason I went out on my own, so I could do the right thing for patients." 

Money can be an issue when it come to medical procedures, but Medicare started covering kyphoplasty last year. "We were one of the first in the country to offer the procedure completely in the office setting—one of two as I understand it. We have a nurse anesthetist, sedation, everything you would expect in an outpatient setting. But this is done at a fraction of the cost and covered by Medicare. "


Other treatments provided for osteoporosis are plentiful. "We focus on what I call ‘hopeless cases’. These are people who have seen their PCP, seen their spine surgeon and told that there’s nothing that can be done for them. Or they’ve been told that they’re “too old” or “too sick” to have anything done," he said. "What I usually tell other docs is to just pick out those patients that no one else has been able to help and send them our way," Dr. Webb said. "So we treat, upper, middle, lower back pain, headaches, etc. We see a lot of patients with failed back surgery who are still suffering and we are able to get the majority of them out of pain without surgery or narcotics. So we specialize in osteoporosis and non-narcotic pain management in seniors."


There is an open house 5 to 8 p.m. November 27th Free DEXA scan or bone density tests are available at the event. There is also a special for fracture risk analysis. If you come in and mention this segment when you get a bone density test, you’ll also receive a free FRAX screening. And if patients don’t have insurance, we have cash pay prices for all of our services that are in line with the Tulsa market.

For more information, call Dr. Webb’s Osteoporosis Institute at 918-260-9322 (260-WEBB). They are located at 9101 S Toledo Avenue, Suite B in Ashton Creek. That’s on 91st street between Yale and Harvard.  

You can visit online at www.drjameswebb.com or like them on Facebook: /DrJamesWebb or OsteoporosisInstitute

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