Vertebral Compression Fracture

Compression fractures of the back are broken vertebrae. Vertebrae are the bones of the spine. Vertebral compression fractures are most common in the thoracic (mid-back) or lumbar (lower) spine.

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common causes of 

Compression Fractures

Osteoporosis is the most common cause of compression fractures. Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones become weakened with age due to losing calcium and other minerals.


Other Causes

  • Trauma to the back
  • Tumors that started in the bone or spread to the bone from elsewhere
  • Tumors that start in the spine, such as multiple myeloma

Symptoms

Compression fractures can occur suddenly. This can cause severe back pain. The pain is most commonly felt in the middle or lower spine. It can also be felt on the sides or in the front of the spine.

The pain is sharp. Some patients describe it as feeling like a knife. The pain can be disabling, and take weeks to months to go away.

Compression fractures due to osteoporosis may cause no symptoms at first. Often, they are discovered when x-rays of the spine are done for other reasons. Over time, the following symptoms may occur:

Pressure on the spinal cord from hunched over posture can, in rare cases, cause:

  • Back pain that starts slowly, and gets worse with walking, but is not felt when resting
  • Loss of height, as much as 6 inches over time
  • Stooped-over posture, or kyphosis, also called a dowager’s hump
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Weakness
  • Difficulty walking
  • Loss of control of the bowel or bladder

Diagnosis

Our physicians are board certified, and are dedicated to giving you a comprehensive exam that will aid in diagnosing the cause of your symptoms. Using advanced diagnostic techniques, our doctors will find out the reason for your pain, and then get you on the road to better health rigaht away. Here are a few steps our physicians use when completing their comprehensive exams:

  • We take your complete medical history to identify or rule out possible causes of your painNumbness
  • We conduct a thorough physical exam
  • We carefully review your symptoms, including how you would describe the pain (burning, achy, dull, etc.) and whether certain positions or activities make the pain feel better or worse
  • We may order diagnostic tests, including spine x-ray, bone density test, CT scan or MRI, to help us diagnose your chronic pain

Once we have an accurate diagnosis, we will work together with you to create a treatment plan that will effectively address your chronic abdominal or pelvic pain.


Treatments

Treatments we offer for vertebral compression fractures include:

  • Biofeedback
  • Injection therapy
  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Vertebroplasty and Kyphoplasty
  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Trigger point injection
  • Epidural steroid injection
  • Occipital nerve block
  • Alternative therapies
  • Medication management

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Digital Guide

Everything you need to know about our services, locations, treatments, frequently asked questions and much more! 

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Phone Numbers

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(301) 703-8767

Pennsylvania

Pa

(724) 603-3560

Va

(540) 433-1905

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Covid-19 update

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We are now seeing patients in the office again! Pain and Spine Specialists is diligently following all recommended CDC guidelines and doing all we can to ensure the safety of our patients. We are happy to schedule you an appointment in-office.

Please call us in Maryland at (301) 703-8767, (724) 603-3560 in Pennsylvania, or (540) 433-1905 in Virginia to make an appointment.

If you are experiencing an emergency, please call 911.

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At Pain and Spine Specialists we are dedicated to providing the highest quality of patient care and services and truly have each individual’s comfort in mind.

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