With a spinal compression fracture, your vertebral bone collapses in on itself, losing height, which may then cause sudden, severe back pain. Though spinal compression fractures may occur after an impact injury, they commonly affect people with osteoporosis. Orthopedic spine surgeon, Robert Lowe III, MD, in Nashville, Springhill, and Cookeville, Tennessee, is an expert at diagnosing and treating spinal compression fractures. To schedule a consultation, call the office most convenient to you or book an appointment online today.
Spinal compression fractures are a type of fracture that affects the vertebrae, which are the bones that make up your spine. With a spinal compression fracture, your vertebrae collapses, losing height.
You can develop a spinal compression fracture in any part of your spine, but they most often occur in the thoracic spine, which is the upper portion of your back. People with osteoporosis are most likely to develop spinal compression fractures.
Osteoporosis is a serious bone condition that makes the bones brittle and more susceptible to breaks. With osteoporosis, you may develop a spinal compression fracture when engaging in daily activities like lifting a bag off the floor or walking down a flight of stairs.
Trauma to the spine from a car accident or bad fall may also cause spinal compression fractures.
Sudden, severe back pain is the most common symptom of a spinal compression fracture. You may notice that your pain worsens during activity and improves when lying still.
Spinal compression fractures also limit mobility and lead to loss of height. Over time, the fracture may cause a spinal deformity, such as thoracic kyphosis, that ultimately leads to disability.
Dr. Lowe diagnoses spinal compression fractures after a comprehensive history and physical exam. However, to confirm a diagnosis and assess the severity of the fracture, he may request imaging tests such as X-rays, a CT scan, or an MRI.
These diagnostic tests also help Dr. Lowe create the best treatment plan to heal your fracture and alleviate your symptoms.
Dr. Lowe works with you to develop a treatment plan that provides the best outcomes. Initially, he may take a conservative approach with bracing and pain medication.
However, if medical treatment fails to provide sufficient relief from your symptoms, Dr. Lowe may recommend minimally invasive spine surgery to treat your spinal compression fracture. He may perform a vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty. During this procedure, he injects a special bone cement into your fractured vertebrae to strengthen and stabilize the bone.
Immediate diagnosis and treatment of spinal compression fractures may prevent spinal deformity and disability. Call the nearest office of Robert Lowe III, MD, or book an appointment online today to schedule your consultation.