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Multiple Vert. Compression Fractures-lenghth of time to recuperate

Started by diligentjoy on 05/03/2010 6:38pm

I've been recovering from 4 vert. compression fractures since Nov 09; post-menupausal osteoporosis (severe amenorrhea during my adult life was a big contributing factor). Does anyone have a research source about whether it's unusual to be taking so long for healing?

While I am unable to work, I had made good progress* in recent months, though a fall last week caused a relapse. The pain had been truly horrific Nov - Dec, improved greatly (totally off pain meds), and now the pain is bad again. Good news: no new fractures with the recent fall). Have been on Forteo, though off this last week as it was causing much dizziness. Will retry shortly; hope to tolerate the dizziness; may take it every other day, though there is no research on its efficacy with such a schedule.

Prior to this last fall: Swimming 7/8 mi + PT exercises in pool 2 x weekly. Walking 3 miles 2 x weekly (some on seated machine) w PT exercises. Lots of breathing exercises (from Postural Restoration Institute) and just beginning super light weights. Still needing to lie down 3 x daily.

Thank you in advance.

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2 Responses


Hi (joy?)., wow. 4 at once must be horrible. It sounds like you were going great until your fall recently. Great that there was no more fractures as a consequence.
I have a bit of a special interest in back pain... rehabilitation and in bone changes from oestrogen depletion... (from a research perspective) so I've blended a bit of my know how and hopefully this will help
From my understanding., spinal fracture healing physiologically you are looking at a good 12 week period, but with ongoing changes in the bone structure (remodelling) for up to 2 years following. You have the added dimension of reduced bone tollerance, and - although I am not completely sure on the extent of slowing of the healing process, I would imagine that the process would be a little slower through the initial phase. Thats not to say though that you will necessarily have 2 years of symptoms - however, it does take a while for your body to adapt. I am sure that you have probably had some postural changes from the fractures - so the muscles and ligaments surrounding structures have to get use to the pressure and position change. The muscles next to the fracture site will have weakened - partly because of the pain and also because of reduced motion - so the support is also lessened - hence the pain and feeling of weakness through the area that you may be experiencing and therefore needing to lie down.
It will get better. Keep doing what your body can handle and back off when you need to. I am sure your therapist will be moving you into specific strengthening exercises for the back muscles around the site when you have recovered from your recent fall and symptoms have settled further.
If you havnt, I would certainly be linking in with a dietician to ensure you are fueling your body well to ensure best possible recovery, and - ensure your balance is being targeted in your exercise program also.
I hope that helps a little. I wish you all the best. DMC.


I too have been suffering from a Compression Fraction since Nov 09, in my lower vertabrae, I just have one though. I also have severe Osteoporosis, and am on Boniva. I have been on that since Feb. and I believe it is doing some good. Although it still hurts when I walk or stand I have been told that this too will get better. I just need some good exercises for this, as it has caused Spinal Stenosis. Thank you.