As a leading spine surgery institute, we understand the impact that spinal fractures can have on our patients’ lives. Spinal fractures can cause significant pain, discomfort, and mobility issues, which can have a profound effect on your overall quality of life. That’s why it’s important to understand what a spinal fracture is, and what can be done to alleviate it.
What is a Spinal Fracture?
Spinal fractures occur when one or more of the vertebrae in the spine break or collapse. These fractures can occur anywhere along the spine, from the neck to the lower back. Spinal fractures can be caused by a range of factors, including trauma, underlying medical conditions, and age-related changes in the spine.
What Does a Spinal Fracture Feel Like?
Depending on the severity of the fracture and the location of the injury, there are many different ways that the spinal fracture could manifest.
Back pain This is the most common symptom of a spinal fracture. The pain may be sharp or dull, and it may be felt in the middle or lower back.
Limited mobility: Spinal fractures can make it difficult to move, stand or sit.
Numbness or tingling: A spinal fracture can cause numbness, tingling, or weakness in the arms, legs, or other parts of the body.
Loss of bladder or bowel control: Spinal fractures can cause a loss of bladder or bowel control, which is a medical emergency.
What Can Cause A Spinal Fracture?
Spinal fractures can be caused by a range of factors.
Trauma: Trauma is the most common cause of spinal fractures. This can include falls, car accidents, or other types of injuries.
Osteoporosis: Osteoporosis is a medical condition that weakens the bones and can make them more susceptible to fractures.
Cancer: Some types of cancer, such as multiple myeloma, can weaken the bones.
Infections: Similar to cancers, infections in the spine can weaken the bones and make fractures happen more frequently.
What Can Be Done for a Spinal Fracture?
Treatment for spinal fractures will depend on the severity of the injury and the underlying cause.
Pain management: Pain management is often the first step in treating spinal fractures. This may include over-the-counter pain relievers, prescription medications, or nerve blocks.
Bracing: Bracing is often used to support the spine and prevent further injury. A back brace may be worn for several weeks or months, depending on the severity of the injury.
Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the fracture and stabilize the spine. This may involve the use of metal rods, screws, or other devices to support the spine.
Physical therapy: Physical therapy can help to strengthen the muscles around the spine and improve mobility.
What Does Recovery from a Spinal Fracture Entail?
Recovery from a spinal fracture can take time, and it is important to follow our recommendations for rest, activity, and rehabilitation.
Rest: Depending on the severity of your injury, you may need to rest for several weeks or months to allow your spine to heal.
Activity modification: We may recommend that you avoid certain activities, such as heavy lifting or high-impact sports, to prevent further injury.
Rehabilitation: Rehabilitation can help to improve your mobility and strength after a spinal fracture. We may recommend exercises or physical therapy to help you regain strength and flexibility.
Is Prevention Possible?
While not all spinal fractures can be prevented, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk.
Maintaining good posture: Good posture can help to reduce the strain on your spine and prevent injuries.
Exercising regularly: Regular exercise can help to strengthen the muscles around the spine and reduce your risk of injury.
Eating a healthy diet: Eating a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D can help to strengthen your bones and reduce your risk of osteoporosis.
Avoiding risky activities: Be cautious when participating in activities that put you at risk of falls or other types of injury, such as contact sports or extreme sports.
Seeking treatment for underlying medical conditions: If you have an underlying medical condition that puts you at risk of a spinal fracture, such as osteoporosis or cancer, it is important to work with your doctor to manage the condition and reduce your risk of injury.
What Can The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care Do To Help?
If you’re struggling with a spinal fracture, don’t let it hold you back from living your life to the fullest. The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care is here to help you reduce pain, increase mobility, and improve your quality of life. As a medical professional with over 20 years of experience in treating various spinal conditions, including spinal fractures, I am dedicated to supporting and guiding you through your treatment journey, with a focus on patient education and a customized approach to care.
Our approach to treatment focuses on personalized attention and clear communication, with a strong emphasis on preventive care and minimally invasive surgeries. Schedule a consultation with us today and discover how we can provide you with the best possible care for your spinal fracture.