While spine fractures usually result from trauma occasioned by accidents in the workplace, vehicular accidents, gunshot and sports injuries, some can occur as the result of posture challenges and aging which can provoke osteoporosis (the degeneration of bone tissue).
This is especially true when speaking of the cervical (upper) vertebrae. But spine fractures may also be attributable to the presence of cancer, as well as tumors.
Spine fractures resulting from trauma are a serious matter. When the vertebrae collapse, nerves are compromised, resulting in pain. Most spine fractures occur in the male population, to the vertebrae in the mid and low back.
Men are four times more likely than women to sustain spine fractures and trauma, especially in these sectors of the spinal column.
While spine fractures from trauma are immediately recognizable as acute, it’s often unclear the extent to which the spine has been affected. Sometimes, the trauma will implicate the spinal cord, itself. When pain symptoms include numbness and tingling or weakness, sometimes accompanied by bowel/bladder problems, a spinal cord injury is likely.
It’s extremely important that people who’ve suffered trauma to the back and spine remain immobile while awaiting medical attention and that they are carefully transported to the nearest emergency medical facility at the earliest opportunity.
Treatment of spine fractures and trauma vary from non-invasive to complex surgical responses. Compression and burst fractures can be treated with a combination of back bracing for a period of between 6 and 12 weeks and physical therapy.
Extension fractures are treatable with the use of a brace or cast, usually worn for 12 weeks. This allows the bones to knit together. This type of therapy is only employed in the instance there has been no damage to the discs and the injury affects only the vertebrae.
Transverse process fractures are treated by the gradual increase of motion, via supportive therapies. These may be pursued in addition to a back brace, depending on the patient’s level of pain.
Fractures causing instability in the spine, or which implicate the spinal cord and nerves, usually require surgery. The goal of surgery is to stabilize the spine, allowing the bone to knit together and also, to remove possible bone fragments which may be compromising the structures of the spine.
Spine Care New Jersey.
At Spine Consult NJ, we treat all conditions of and injuries to the spine. We’re a specialized facility, focused on restoring our patients to full function with therapies ranging from conservative interventions to surgery.
Here, we marry modern techniques with traditional orthopedic practice to offer our patients personalized care that addresses their specific challenges. From intake and diagnosis, through therapy, to recovery, the team at Spine Consult NJ is committed to your recovery and restored the quality of life.
If you’ve sustained spine fractures or trauma, contact us. We can help.