Vertebral compression fractures occur when the normal vertebral body of the spine is squeezed or compressed. The bone collapses when too much pressure is placed on the vertebrae, resulting in pain, limited mobility, loss of height, and spinal deformities. In severe compression fractures the vertebral body is pushed into the spinal canal which will apply pressure on the spinal cord and nerves.
Vertebral fractures results from weakened spine caused by osteogenesis imperfecta, osteoporosis, tumor, and trauma. Osteogenesis imperfect is a hereditary disease resulting in bone fragility. It is an autosomal dominant disorder of connective tissue that is characterized by easily fractured bones.
You may experience severe pain in the back which worsens on standing or walking and decreases when resting. Other symptoms include, weakness, and numbness in the affected areas, disability, limited spinal mobility, and loss of overall height. The symptoms which indicate multiple fractures in the spine are hunch back, bulging stomach, shortness of breath, hip fracture, and gastrointestinal problems.
Your doctor may require diagnostic tests such as X-ray, MRI scan, and bone scan which help to determine and confirm the fracture.
The treatment for vertebral compression fractures aims at reducing the pain, stabilizing, and repairing the fracture. The non-surgical measures include medications, back braces, bed rest, and certain exercises.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed to relieve bone, muscle and nerve pain. A back brace may be suggested to support the back and immobilize the movements.
Surgery may be needed if the pain still persists despite of non-surgical treatment. There are two minimally invasive surgical procedures for treating vertebral compression fractures are:
- Kyphoplasty: In this procedure a deflated balloon called as bone tamp is injected into the spine. The balloon is inflated until it expands to a desired height. The created space is then filled with orthopedic cement called polymethylmethacrylate. This procedure helps to restore the height of the vertebrae and reduces the deformity.
- Vertebroplasty: This technique involves injecting a cement material called polymethylmethacrylate, into the collapsed vertebra. The injected cement hardens quickly stabilizing the fracture, relieves pressure, and prevents further collapse.
The following measures may be practiced to decrease the risk of developing vertebral fractures:
- Learn some good techniques for standing, sitting, lifting, and housework activities.
- Avoid lifting heavy things, jumping, diving, horse riding, sliding, and amusement rides
- Ensure that you wear seat belts in cars
- Exercise regularly. Swimming provides movement of joints without being stressed and is also good for the muscles at the back
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Houston Back and Spine Specialists
Advanced Orthopedics and sports medicine has Board Certified/Eligible physicians who are thoroughly educated in the latest treatment techniques both surgical and conservative. The spine surgeons practice conservatively utilizing minimally invasive techniques whenever possible. Should surgery be required, options range from out-patient spinal surgery to major spinal reconstruction and management of scoliosis.
Contact us today to Schedule an Appointment or call us at 281-955-2650 to learn more about our Back and Spine Treatment options.
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What Our Patients Are Saying
Each procedure done by Dr. Patel has been an improvement. Very pleased.
Dr. Patel has been a great Doctor for me. When I was referred to after discussion we decided to do injections in my back. The first two did not work so did two more in a different section of my back. These injections worked great. I’m now able to sleep at night and the numbness in my foot is almost gone. The tingling in my foot & leg is gone and I am very happy about that. I am extremely happy that Dr. Patel is my Doctor. She has been a good listener when I tell her where I hurt and talks to me about what she feels should be done. The final decision is always mine.
On Nov. 22, 2017, I had a spinal injection in my lower back and it was an instant miracle in my life! For the first time in 4 intolerable months of pain, I was finally pain free, and I am now getting a second chance to live again! I am so grateful to Dr. Patel for my new life, and to God for guiding me to her! Thank you so very much Dr. Patel – you are God’s gift to me, thank you for being so awesome at what you do.
Dr. Patel is one of the best Doctors I have ever had. She is pretty good at her job. She makes it plain and simple. She is also very thoughtful. I was very glad to have met her. In other words she is pretty good.
The surgery done by Dr. S. Patel (Actually injections) & the mild medications she has prescribed has surely made my lower back -hip-leg less painful. I have complete confidence in her medical judgement & advice. She will administer second injection in June.
Dr. Patel is a very good Pain Management Doctor. She is one of my favorite doctors.
Dr. Patel has been great at my pain relief. She doesn’t force me to take any meds I don’t want, or injections. She will give me the injection I want when I need it. Great friendly Doctor.
Thank you for the opportunity to express how pleased I am with the excellent care of Stacy A. Bacon, M.D. I have confidence in her ability to care for me as she successfully partially replaced a broken hip 10 years ago, 2007. I also want to compliment Cheryl who set up the appointment. She represents Advanced Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine very well.
It’s been over 8 years since Dr. Bacon replaced by right ankle. I still can’t thank her enough for the years of pain free walking I have done since! And I’m still going strong! I had numerous breaks in my ankle due an auto accident, repaired/set by a different doctor, after multiple surgery’s, I was still limping, in great pain every day. Then I found Dr. Bacon, now, no more pain, NONE, and no more limping after this ankle replacement. I rave about her constantly and would recommend her to anyone who has a foot or ankle issue
I had been in so much pain with my back for years. It got so bad that I knew I had to do something. I went to Dr Mohr for help. I was so afraid to have spine surgery as I had heard so many horror stories. He and his staff were very informative. I was amazed at the new technology in spinal surgery. December 8, 2016 I had rods and pins put in my back. I am so happy I did now. I am healing really fast and the pain is going away as my body heals. Thank you Dr Mohr for you expertise and sensitive nature. You were understanding about my fear and helped assure me so I could receive the help I needed. You are an excellent Doctor.