Vertebral Body Fractures

Introduction

Vertebral body fractures are fractures of vertebrae in the spine and typically occur as the result of major trauma to the body from a fall, motor vehicle accident or sports accident. Vertebral fractures can also be caused by degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis or other conditions which might require further work-up.

Most spinal fractures occur in the mid-back (thoracic) or lower back (lumbar spine) or at point where the two connect (the thoracolumbar junction). They can develop unnoticed over a period of time, without symptom or pain, until the bone fully breaks.
Symptoms of vertebral body fractures include back pain, weakness, numbness and tingling and, if the spinal cord is involved, tingling, numbness and/or weakness in the limbs.

Diagnosis for vertebral body fractures is typically done with an imaging test such as an X-ray, CT scan, MRI or bone scan.

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