There is more than one way to break a bone. Fractures occur in a variety of ways and it is important to seek out the right kind of help for these injuries. Many broken bones require much more attention than simple splints or casts. If the break is not clean or it occurs along a different axis than is usual, you may need the help of a specialist.
What Is a Compression Fracture?
Most people are familiar with the traditional depiction of a broken bone. They imagine a neat break that runs perpendicular to the tibia bone in the leg or in the ulna or radius in the forearm. Victims of broken bones, however, are lucky if their injuries are so simple. There are numerous and difficult complications that can occur when a bone breaks. One of the more problematic bone injuries is a compression fracture.
A compression fracture is a fracture that occurs in the spine. The implication of such an injury is a crushing or wedging of the vertebrae. This is not quite the same as a broken back, which might involve pressures running perpendicular to the length of the spinal cord. Instead, a compression fracture more commonly occurs when the spine is forced to receive too great a burden along the vertical axis.
Such a fracture may range in severity from mild to severe. With a mild fracture, patients will generally suffer mild pain. They may think that they have simply pulled a muscle. It may even heal on its own, though it will cause discomfort. Any discovery of such a break should always receive the attention of a medical professional.
Patients will have no trouble discerning that they have suffered a severe compression fracture of the spine. Severe pain will ensure and it may become difficult to stand erect, resulting in a hunched posture that cannot be changed. Neurological damage may also occur.
How Can You Suffer a Compression Fracture?
These sorts of fractures often happen due to falls. However, even carrying a heavy object can result in a compression fracture. Anytime that someone thinks that they may have suffered such a fracture, they should seek medical assistance in order to verify their well-being or treat the problem as soon as possible.
If you seek compression fracture treatment, doctors may offer a variety of assistance. A back brace is typically offered for less severe cases which can heal on their own if the back is not subjected to a great deal of torsion. Painkilling drugs and the bone-building hormone calcitonin may be very helpful in remedying both mild and severe cases. Sometimes, doctors may deem it necessary to perform a minimally-invasive surgical procedure in order to treat the fracture effectively.