How Long Will a Fractured Back Keep Me Down?

  Athletic woman in pink sportswear standing at the seaside rubbing the muscles of her lower back A healthy back plays a pivotal role in how you go about your life. When your back is injured, the pain can be debilitating, making it difficult to complete everyday tasks. A fracture in your back can further complicate matters as you weigh options for treatment and consider how long you will be inactive. 

How Do Back Fractures Happen?

A fracture in your back can happen in a variety of ways. In most situations, a fractured back occurs after experiencing sudden high-velocity trauma to the area from a car accident, fall from height or athletic activity.

Other causes of back fractures include weakened bones from osteoporosis and cancer.

How is a Back Fracture Diagnosed?

To get a close look at your injury, your doctor may order an x-ray to identify the location of the fracture. Your doctor may also administer an MRI and a CT scan to examine the soft tissues surrounding the spine and pinpoint structural damage to the bones. 

Treatment Options

Minor fractures can sometimes resolve themselves with rest and avoiding strenuous activities. Treating a back fracture depends on its severity, symptoms, and what your doctor recommends. Some doctors can advise patients to wear a back brace and rest to help the vertebrae heal. You may also undergo physical therapy to rebuild strength and restore your range of motion. 

But if your back fracture is severe, surgery may be necessary to help repair the damage.

What to Expect From Back Surgery

Surgery is a last resort for severe back injuries. The goal is to help relieve pressure on the spine and put bones back in place. Some procedures involve using metal rods, screws, and pins to stabilize your spine. Although back surgery may sound frightening to some, there are minimally invasive surgical options that may help you. The type of surgery you may need, or if a procedure is necessary, depends on your doctor’s recommendations and the nature of your injury.

Recovering a Fractured Back

The timeframe for the healing process varies, and you will need to follow guidelines set by your doctor. Back fractures that don’t require surgery can take between 6 and 12 weeks to heal. If you must undergo a procedure, it’s crucial to stay patient, stick to your doctor’s recommendations, and not push your body too hard.

Schedule a Consultation

A back fracture should not be taken lightly and must be addressed to avoid long-term damage. 

If you’ve injured your back and need advice on what to do, call Coastal Spine. Call 856-222-4444 to schedule a consultation.

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