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Compression Fracture

Louisiana Pain Specialists -  - Pain Management

Louisiana Pain Specialists

Pain Management & Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation located in Kenner, LA & Metairie, LA

A compression fracture means you have a collapsed vertebral bone in your spine. This type of fracture is common in those with osteoporosis and causes intense back pain. At Louisiana Pain Specialists in Kenner, Metairie, Laplace, Baton Rouge, Marrero, and New Orleans, Louisiana, the team provides minimally invasive treatments for a compression fracture to restore vertebral height and encourage bone healing. Schedule a consultation by calling the office nearest you or booking an appointment online today.

Compression Fracture Q & A

What is a compression fracture?

A compression fracture refers to collapsed vertebrae. Your spine is a series of tiny bones ― vertebrae — stacked one on top of another. These bones protect your spinal cord, keep you upright, and support the weight of your upper body. 

With a compression fracture, your vertebrae collapse. Though you can develop a compression fracture in any part of your spine, it most often affects the vertebra in the mid-back or thoracic spine.

You can develop a compression fracture from a high-impact injury, such as a car crash. However, osteoporosis is the most common cause of this type of fracture. With osteoporosis, your bones are weak and susceptible to breaks.

If you have osteoporosis, you can develop a compression fracture from everyday things like walking down the stairs or picking up a bag off the floor. 

What are the symptoms of a compression fracture?

Sudden back pain is the most common symptom of a compression fracture. Other symptoms include:

  • Pain that worsens when walking or standing
  • Pain that improves when lying down
  • Poor movement in your spine

Over time, you may develop a hump in your back, a spinal deformity known as kyphosis. 

How is a compression fracture diagnosed?

The team at Louisiana Pain Specialists conducts comprehensive evaluations when you come in with back pain to identify the origin of your discomfort. 

Your provider asks detailed questions about your symptoms and when they started. They also review your medical history and perform a physical exam.

To diagnose a compression fracture, the team performs diagnostic testing, which may include X-rays, CT scan, MRIs, or bone scan.

How is a compression fracture treated?

Treatment for your compression fracture depends on the severity of your symptoms. If your symptoms are mild, the team may take a conservative approach and recommend:

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Muscle relaxers
  • Bracing
  • Bone-strengthening medication

If your pain is severe or your fracture fails to heal, the team at Louisiana Pain Specialists may recommend vertebroplasty or kyphoplasty, which are minimally invasive procedures for treating compression fractures.

During vertebroplasty, your provider injects a medical-grade bone cement that strengthens the bone.

The kyphoplasty is similar to vertebroplasty. However, before injecting the bone cement, your provider inflates a balloon into your broken vertebrae to restore height.

To schedule a compression fracture consultation with the experts at Louisiana Pain Specialists, call the office or book an appointment online today.