spine compression fractures treatment

spine compression fractures treatment

spine compression fractures treatment

Pain Medicine

You can often get relief with an over-the counter drug like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Check with your doctor to see which one is right for you. Your doctor might prescribe a stronger medicine for more intense or persistent pain.

The doctor might also suggest you take the hormone calcitonin. Studies show it can help ease the pain from compression fractures.

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Rest

You don't want to overdo it with activity, but you also don't want to stop moving entirely. Lying around for too long can weaken your bones even more. Your doctor might recommend bed rest for a short period of time. After several days or as soon as you start to feel better, gradually ease back into your old routine.

For a few weeks or months you may still need to avoid heavy exercise that could make your injury worse. Ask your doctor when it's safe for you to get active again and what the best ways to get moving are.

Physical Therapy

Once you're feeling better, ask your doctor if you should join a rehab program or work with a physical therapist. Exercises that strengthen your back can help you avoid having more compression fractures.

Check with your doctor about the best weight-bearing exercises for you, such as:

  • Walking
  • Yoga
  • Dancing

They're all good for strengthening bones. Or try tai chi, which improves balance and helps prevent the falls that lead to fractures.

Bracing

Wearing a back brace when you have a spinal compression fracture is similar to wearing a cast when you have a broken arm. It's made of a rigid frame that takes pressure off the painful bone and limits your movement. It gives your injured vertebrae -- the small bones that make up your spinal column -- time to heal.

There isn't much research to prove that a brace helps heal compression fractures, but one study shows it can ease pain.

Prevent Further Fractures

In the short term, treatments like pain medicines, physical therapy, and bracing might help ease your pain and get you moving again. But you also want to lower your odds of getting more broken bones. Some drugs can help.

Bisphosphonates. This type of medicine can prevent more bone loss and reduce fracture risk. Some examples include:

  • Alendronate (Fosamax)
  • Ibandronate (Boniva)
  • Risedronate (Actonel)
  • Zoledronic acid (Reclast)

Your doctor may suggest other medicines, such as:

SERMs. These may help prevent bone loss if you’ve gone through menopause. Some examples are raloxifene (Evista) and tamoxifen.

Denosumab (Prolia). Your doctor may recommend it if you’ve been through menopause. You get it as an injection under your skin every 6 months.

Romosozumab (Evenity). This drug increases bone formation and decreases bone breakdown. One dose of romosozumab consists of two injections, one immediately following the other, given once a month by a health care professional. Twelve doses in total are recommended.

Parathyroid hormone (Forteo, Tymlos). This helps you form new bone. It's for men and postmenopausal women with severe osteoporosis. You inject it every day for up to 2 years.

 

10 common questions about spine compression fractures treatment

1How long does it take a compression fracture of the spine to heal?
about 3 months Compression fractures usually heal on their own in about 3 months. While that happens, your doctor may suggest you try some things at home that can make you feel better, such as pain medicines, rest, physical therapy, or a back brace
2Is walking good for a compression fracture?
Low impact activities, such as walking or tai chi, are good for your heart, and a healthy circulatory system can increase blood flow to the fracture and help your bones heal faster. ... For many people, it's best to avoid physical therapy soon after a spine compression fracture to decrease stress on the fractured bone
3What is a compression fracture in the spine?
(Vertebral Fractures) In a compression fracture of the spine, the drum-shaped part (body) of one or more back bones (vertebrae) collapses into itself and becomes squashed (compressed) into a wedge shape. Most compression fractures result from slight or no force in older people with osteoporosis.
4What is the best treatment for a compression fracture?
For the most part, nonoperative treatments are recommended for compression fracture. These treatments include pain medications and modified physical activity. The doctor may recommend wearing a brace that helps support the back and prevents bending forward, and therefore removes pressure from the fractured vertebrae.
5How do I get pain relief from a compression fracture?
The majority of fractures heal with pain medication, reduction in activity, medications to stabilize bone density, and a good back brace to minimize motion during the healing process. Most people return to their everyday activities. Some may need further treatment, such as surgery
6Is a heating pad good for a compression fracture?
Treatment for the vertebral fracture will typically include non-surgical care, such as rest, pain medication, use of heat or ice for local pain, and slow return to mobility. Surgery may also be advisable. The two most common types of surgery for this type of fracture are vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty.
7Is a compression fracture serious?
Soft, weakened bones are at the heart of the problem. Compression fractures are usually caused by the bone-thinning condition osteoporosis, especially if you are a woman over age 50 who has been through menopause. ... Even coughing or sneezing can cause compression fractures if you have severe osteoporosis
8Can a compression fracture get worse?
If a compression fracture develops quickly, you may feel sudden, severe back pain. A fracture doesn't always cause immediate symptoms, though. ... Slowly worsening back pain — lying on your back may relieve the pain and standing may make it worse. Decreased height.
9Can you walk with a spinal fracture?
Spinal fractures are different than a broken arm or leg. A fracture or dislocation of a vertebra can cause bone fragments to pinch and damage the spinal nerves or spinal cord. ... Depending on how severe your injury is, you may experience pain, difficulty walking, or be unable to move your arms or legs (paralysis).
10How painful is a compression fracture?
A vertebral body compression fracture is a type of fracture in the spine in which a vertebral bone has decreased at least 15 to 20 percent in height due to fracture. They are followed by acute back pain and may lead to chronic pain, deformity, loss of height, and crowding of internal organs.

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