In general, spinal compression fractures occur when a vertebra collapses due to hairline fractures in the spinal bones. Such fractures may cause permanent changes to the spine’s shape and strength. Because of this, you will look shorter than you before. The majority of compression fractures in Ionia suffered by women who are more than 50 years old have to do with osteoporosis. Also, they are a symptom for those who have cancer that has spread to the bones.
Spinal compression fractures can cause back pain. However, a lot of them go undiagnosed since you may associate your back pain with aging and not something more severe.
Benefits of Seeing a Compression Fracture Specialist
A spinal compression specialist has a team that aims to offer comprehensive and integrated care for those who have spinal conditions. With them, you will receive care during each stage of your treatment journey, from diagnosis to treatment and recovery. Some compression fractures can be fixed with nonsurgical treatments. But, if you need surgery, your spine team will use advanced minimally invasive surgical techniques with the use of state-of-the-art equipment. You can expect to recover faster, experience less pain, and return to your normal activities soon.
Who Treats Your Spinal Compression Fracture?
The following are doctors you can turn to for a compression fracture:
- Physical Therapist – This specialist has expertise in different nonsurgical techniques focused on preventing or overcoming pain and building strength to prevent future injuries.
- Pain Management Specialist – This specialist uses advanced pain management techniques to help you avoid surgery. They will work with you to make a treatment plan that can restore your pain-free life.
- Physiatrist – This rehab doctor treats injuries or illnesses that impact movement. They manage pain, including the pain associated with a spinal compression fracture, with nonsurgical approaches.
How Spinal Compression Fractures are Treated
Doctors treat most spinal compression fractures with pain relievers, bone density stabilization medication, back bracing, and physical activity reduction.
Over-the-counter pain meds, such as acetaminophen and NSAIDs, are recommended. Usually, doctors will prescribe muscle relaxants and nerve or bone pain medication.
Back braces offer external support to restrict spine-related motions to reduce pain. Although immediate treatment is vital to relieving the pain and fracture risks, it is also important to prevent subsequent fractures. Doctors may prescribe drugs like bisphosphonates for bone loss stabilization or restoration.
Surgery may be recommended if chronic pain persists even if the patient has explored nonsurgical treatments. Procedures such as vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty are used for treating spinal compression fractures. Sometimes, spinal fusion is conducted for spine stabilization.