Anyone suffering from a vertebral compression fracture is sure to know something is wrong. They may already be living with a condition like osteoporosis, which leaves them prone to developing disc issues. But, unlike osteoporosis, which may present in nagging, dull pain or a feeling of frailty, a compression fracture is acutely painful and wholly agonizing when it occurs.
For someone living with chronic pain, a burst of severe pain is something even they’ll notice. Unfortunately, if they don’t seek immediate assessment of that pain, it’s liable to quell into the chronic pain they’re already familiar with, albeit often at a higher level. It’s a situation Ideal Spine sees all too frequently, presenting in improperly healed vertebral fractures.
In any case, a fracture is a problem that needs attention. It can persist in pain, decreased range of motion, decreased physical function, mental anguish, and much more. In women, it’s estimated that compression fractures play an active role in raising mortality rates by as much as 15%. To make matters even worse, fractures have a tendency to compound. The situation can quickly snowball from a single unchecked fracture.
Diagnosis is the first step
Diagnosing a compression fracture is critical before any corrective or mitigating steps are taken. Chiropractors need to know the location of the fracture, its severity, and any contributing factors that may have caused it or that are actively worsening it. The complete picture is required to assess a treatment plan.
In this critical stage, x-rays are imperative. Not only do they call attention directly to a fracture, they provide visible evidence that pure palpitation cannot. They also provide chiropractors with a comprehensive view of the affected section of the spine (cervical, thoracic or lumbar).
More than just relying on diagnostic imaging – which can be wrongly interpreted without supporting evidence – most chiropractors will interview patients about their pain. Common questions include:
- What does the pain feel like?
- When did the pain start?
- Is the pain consistent or intermittent?
- What makes the pain worse? Better?
Finally, diligence is done in regards to the patient’s previous health. If they’re known to have a preexisting condition like osteoporosis or stenosis, diagnosis of a fracture can be better cemented. If nothing else, it helps assure the suspicions of a chiropractor based on the presenting evidence.
Treatment is imperative
Treating a vertebral compression is no small task and one that requires immediate and ongoing attention. In severe cases, surgery may be a necessary evil, especially in situations where discs have deteriorated and vertebrae are prone to extreme compression. In many cases, however, corrective chiropractic can hold potential for relief.
Chiropractic treatment for vertebral compression comes in stages. First, is stabilizing the patient to alleviate acute pain. Next comes decompression, to reduce stress on the fracture and allow it to heal. After that, corrective chiropractic can help to realign and stabilize vertebrae. Finally, prevention is essential in staving off future fractures or aggravation of the healed fracture.
Using a Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) treatment plan, chiropractors can plan for each person’s unique recovery based on information gleaned during the assessment phase. This also enables implementation of tailored treatment, such as decompression therapy, targeted massage, dietary supplements, and muscle strengthening exercises.
Don’t downplay a fracture
Vertebral fractures are dire, no matter their severity. If dealt with swiftly and accordingly, they can be overcome and prevented in the future, enabling sufferers to regain their spine health. Left unchecked, they could do major damage that lasts over the long-term.
Ideal Spine urges patients not to downplay acute, severe pain in their spine – especially if they have a history of osteoporosis, stenosis, or other forms of spinal compression or frailness. Visit a qualified chiropractor right away to ensure vertebral compression fractures are being appropriately diagnosed and treated.
Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.