About 750,000 Americans yearly suffer a vertebral compression fracture, the most common spine fracture. At Apex Endovascular in Fort Collins, Colorado, skilled board-certified vascular specialist Shawn Ahmed, MD, PhD, offers an effective solution called kyphoplasty to ease the nagging back pain caused by compression fractures. Call the office or click the provided scheduling feature to request an appointment online today.
A spine fracture is a broken bone in the spinal column. Your spine comprises 33 small bones (vertebrae) stacked one atop the other. The most common spine fracture is a vertebral compression fracture, in which a crack appears in the rounded front part of a vertebra.
Vertebral compression fractures can cause symptoms like:
Without treatment, vertebral compression fractures often cause vertebral collapse. If you have one compression fracture, your risk of another is five times higher. Eventually, collapsing vertebrae can lead to kyphosis (exaggerated rounding of the back).
Anything that affects the health or structure of your vertebrae can lead to spine fractures. Osteoporosis — a disease of bone thinning — is the most common contributor to spine fractures, although other things, like spinal tumors, can cause them as well.
Many vertebral compression fractures happen in falls and other trauma. Because osteoporosis weakens bones, compression fractures often occur during routine movements, like twisting at the waist or bending over.
Treatment depends on how severe your back pain is and if you have other symptoms. Mild spine fractures can respond to a back brace and temporary pain medication, as the body often heals the fracture on its own.
Moderate or severe pain can require a procedure called kyphoplasty. At Apex Endovascular, Dr. Ahmed performs kyphoplasty in a state-of-the-art outpatient facility using only twilight (not general) sedation.
Dr. Ahmed creates a nick in the skin to access the fractured vertebral body. He injects bone cement through a thin tube to restore the vertebra to its original height. The procedure takes about an hour.
Kyphoplasty has proven safe and effective. Virtually all patients experience an immediate and dramatic reduction in pain. You can return to your routine activities the following day.
Kyphoplasty offers impressive results with minimal downtime and an extremely low complication rate. It’s shown to lower hospitalization risk, and elderly patients who undergo kyphoplasty soon after a fracture have a significantly reduced risk of death.
If you’re struggling with chronic back pain, it could be caused by a treatable spine fracture. Call Apex Endovascular today or click the online booking feature to make an appointment.