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Posted in: Back pain, and Spinal fractures.

Vertebral Compression Fractures with NO Osteoporosis!?!?!?

Started by Cindy Stoller on 03/22/2017 12:39am

In Jun 2005, I suffered a compression fracture of T-12. No injury, just bent over to put a 6 pack of water in the fridge. Diagnosis was delayed a week, following a hellish few sessions of PT which actually made my legs go numb. Ortho put me in a TSLO brace, everything was fine.
Until Nov 3, 2016, when I bent over to plug in a light and popped L-2, decreasing height by 30%. Xrays showed nothing, but I talked my doc into a CT scan. Decided to treat conservatively.
Dec 17, 2016, bent over to wash my hair in the kitchen sink, and popped L-1 AND further fractured L-2 to now 60% and appeared to now be a burst fx.
Ortho performed L-1 & L-2 kyphoplasty, which did relieve the remaining pain by day 3 postop.
Mar 4, 2017, had gradual onset of pain, leaving me to believe I had another fx. Ortho confirmed on xray I fractured L-3.
In reviewing past CT scans and MRIs (2005, 2008, 2016), sometime after 2008 but before 2016, I also fractured L-4.
In Feb 2017, I had a DEXA scan done for bone density. NORMAL! No osteoporosis, not even osteopenia. I am confused and so is my ortho.
What other conditions can cause so many VCFs????????
Bone cancer - but wouldn't that have shown up on CT or MRI already?
He is referring me to an endocrinologist. Why? I'm not sure.I was in too much of a daze to ask very many questions.
This last fx was not as severe as the others, and is already 50% improved, so no surgery for now.

Anyone have ANY idea what is going on??????? TIA Rolling Eyes
(FYI, I am a 59 yr old white female, retired OB Nurse)

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1 Response


Hi, Cindy--thank you for taking the time to post. Your story certainly is an interesting one: VCFs are so often connected to osteoporosis, and to hear you don't have the condition has us scratching our heads, too.

We're not sure why your doctor referred you to an endocrinologist--perhaps there's a potential hormonal connection to why your bones are weakening. Whatever the reason, we think it's always beneficial to have another physician assess the situation and provide thoughts on what may be at the root of the problem. Another thing you can do is take your imaging scans to another spine specialist to have them take a look, too. There's nothing wrong with seeking a second opinion, even if you have a great relationship with your current doctor. You can read more about that here ( Second Opinion on Spine Surgery: Rude or Smart? ).

Please keep us posted on what you find out from the endocrinologist! We hope you get some answers soon--we wish you the very best of luck!