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Severe back pain due to the fracture in vertebra. Decrease in the height of vertebra. No-surgical cure?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
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My Dad who is 69 years old has suffered a fracture in D5 vertebra with decrease in height of vertebra. He has pain in back related to this area. Can we have non-surgical cure of this. How major is it.
Posted Tue, 8 May 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Radhika 25 minutes later
Thanks for the query.

I believe the more information a person gives the better is the doctor's reply, please do not mind in answering the following:
1. Was the fracture caused due to trauma, osteoporosis or other factors?
2. When has this happened?
3. Is there any restriction of movements.

I have gone through the radiological reports you have attached with the query. Depending upon the cause fracture of Vertebrae can be treated. Most fractures are found in elderly patients with osteoporosis and these generally do not cause injury to the spinal cord. In these patients, it is treated with prescription medications, calcitonin, calcium supplements to prevent more fractures. Medications can help prevent future fractures, but the collapse of the vertebrae that has already occurred cannot be reversed.

Pain due to this can be treated with pain killers and bed rest at first. Narcotics are often needed. Later he could use back braces. Some patients may benefit from some physical therapy to help with movement and building up muscle strength around the spine.

If severe pain is still present after 2 months or more of bed rest, surgery can be option. You can discuss the options with spine surgeon.

Fractures from trauma often require a brace for 6 - 10 weeks to protect the bone as it heals. There is no evidence of bone pressing on the spinal cord, nerves or any stenosis according to your MRI reports.

I hope I have answered your query. Please accept my answer if you have no follow up queries.


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