Spinal Fractures Center
A spinal fracture is when you break a bone in your spine—that's the basic definition. Your spinal column is made up of vertebra stacked one on top of each other. (You'll learn more about this in the Anatomy of Spinal Fractures article.) The vertebrae—the bones in your spine—can break, just like other bones in your body. However, spinal fractures can be more severe than breaking other bones in your body because a spinal fracture can cause trauma to the spinal cord.
There are many types of spinal fractures, all explained in the article Types of Spinal Fractures. The treatment you receive depends on the severity of the fracture, where you have the fracture, and if the fracture is causing problems with the spinal cord or spinal nerves.
This article series focuses on spinal fractures caused by trauma (eg, car accidents or falls). Spinal fractures can also be caused by osteoporosis, a condition that weakens your bones. Osteoporosis-induced fractures are usually called compression fractures. If you have osteoporosis (or are trying to prevent osteoporosis and spinal compression fractures), you should read the article Osteoporosis and Compression Fractures.