Vertebral Body Compression Fracture

Vertebral Body Compression Fracture

Vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) are cracks in the vertebrae formed under pressure, which then cause the bones to collapse. This can happen as a result of trauma or weakened bones, and is the most common type of fracture among people with osteoporosis. Sudden fractures are known to cause severe back pain. Fractures that are a result of a gradual degenerative disease may not cause immediate pain, yet ultimately lead to back pain and sometimes a loss of height.

People that have sustained one VCF are five times more likely to experience another. Treatment options include a back brace to limit mobility and encourage healing, as well as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or opioids to temporarily relieve pain. Surgically, minimally invasive procedures such as kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty involve injecting a hardening material or cement into the bone, however the effectiveness of these treatments has been debated.

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