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Different Types of Spinal Fractures

Last updated 3 years ago

A spinal fracture can easily take you off your feet and lead to serious pain. In some cases, spinal fractures can even damage the spinal cord and cause a wide range of symptoms—including loss of mobility in certain areas of the body. Spinal fractures are often the result of car accidents and falls from significant height, but they may occur in more seemingly minor accidents in seniors who are suffering from osteoporosis. Below you can see the different types of spinal fractures that may occur in the lower of mid-spine and require immediate treatment followed by long-term rehabilitation.

Flexion fracture

Both compression and axial burst fractures are relatively common types of flexion fractures that involve the partial or complete loss of height of the vertebrae. In compression fractures, the spine is often weakened from degenerative disease or aging, and the pressure of certain activities compresses the anterior section of the vertebra. Axial burst fractures are typically the result of landing on one’s feet after falling from a distance, and they may have more of an impact on spinal stability.

Extension fracture

In the extension fracture pattern, a vertebra in the spine is pulled apart as the upper part of the body is thrown forward while the lower body remains held in place by a seat belt or other type of restraint. The distinctive nature of this type of fracture makes it unique to auto accidents.

Rotation fracture

Fracture-dislocation is the most serious type of spinal fracture, and it follows the rotation fracture pattern in which a vertebra becomes displaced by movement of the soft tissues supporting the spine. This type of fracture can have serious effects on stability and compress the spinal cord.

If you have suffered an injury that could result in any type of spinal fracture, the orthopedic and neurological specialists at the Spine Center of Brandon Regional Hospital can manage your care and get you back on your feet. You can find a physician within our spine program by visiting our website or calling our healthcare referral line at (888) 327-2636. 


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Disclaimer: The materials provided are intended for informational purposes only. You should contact your doctor for medical advice. Use of and access to this website or other materials do not create a physician-patient relationship. The opinions expressed through this website are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the hospital, medical staff, or any individual physician or other healthcare professional.
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