Spinal Compression Fractures: What To Expect After Your Diagnosis

Health & Medical Blog

A spinal compression fracture is defined as a collapse of the vertebrae in the spine. This condition tends to be more common in people who suffer from osteoporosis, a disease that causes bones to become weak and brittle due to tissue loss. While severe spinal compression fractures may end up needing surgical treatment, many doctors tend to take a more conservative approach initially because many spinal compression fractures can heal on their own within a few months. If you have been diagnosed with a spinal compression fracture, you can expect some or all of the following treatment methods.

Give Your Body Rest

When it comes to giving your body time to heal from a spinal compression fracture, there can be a thin line between resting too much and resting too little. You body needs some rest to promote healing, but spending too much time resting may actually cause bones to become even more brittle. Your doctor may order bed rest for several days until you begin to start feeling better physically. You will then be allowed to resume your normal day-to-day routine. It is worth noting that you may have to avoid high impact exercises and strenuous activity for several weeks or months; consult your doctor before resuming an exercise routine or engaging in activities.

Control Pain and Discomfort

Having a spinal fracture can be uncomfortable and even painful at times. In most cases, you will be advised to use an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, to help manage any discomfort that you may experience as the compression fracture is healing. If you have extreme pain that can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers, make an appointment with your doctor. He or she may prescribe a narcotic pain medication for pain relief.

Treat Osteoporosis

If your spinal compression factor is related to your osteoporosis, your doctor will want to treat the osteoporosis to help promote healing of your vertebrae and prevent future compression fractures. There are a number of different medications that can help prevent future bone loss, and may even help rebuild some of the bone that you have already lost. The type of medication prescribed will usually depend on your medical history and the severity of your osteoporosis.

Start Physical Therapy

Your doctor may advise you to begin physical therapy when you begin to feel better in order to strengthen your back muscles. Stronger back muscles can provide extra support for the spinal column and may help prevent future spinal compression fractures. For more information, talk to a professional like Southwest Florida Neurosurgical & Rehab Associates.


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Cancer Treatment Questions: Understanding The Differences in Options

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