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Burst Fractures?

Just curious who else here has suffered a burst fracture and what treatments you have had and how you are dealing with it. Have you had surgery? and if so has it helped. I have compressed disks, compression fractures but the burst fracture is what causes the most pain and biggest affect on my daily life. I see a lot about other types of injury but have yet talked to anyone else who has experienced a burst fracture. 50% loss on my L3.


  • i sustained a T6 burst fracture in a dirtbike accident in september 2014. I was very close to being paralyzed so they did fusion surgery two days later to stabilize my spine. You can see the hardware in my signature pic to the left. I was fused from T4-T8. That was the only course of treatment they could take otherwise the broken pieces could damage my spinal cord. I'm currently 10 months post op now and I'm doing ok I guess. I can walk just fine, in fact i'm walking about 2 miles every morning for exercise. Sitting down is ok but after a period of time I have to get up and move around. I dont have any severe pain just more of an uncomfortable feeling. The only time I get some intense soreness is if i'm up for quite a while ( talking hours) doing alot of stuff using my arms. That soreness is always in the same place, just above my incision site and over to the right in between my shoulder blade and spine. If I sit/lay down for like 20 minutes or more then it goes away. Im not back to everyday normal activities as the doc told me to continue with the no bending/lifting/twisting restrictions until I hit the 1 year mark of my surgery as i'm still not 100% fused yet. I already did 12 sessions of physical therapy and continue with the exercises at home. I'm not working as they told me i cant go back to my construction job, too physically demanding now for my back. Thats about it I guess. If you read this and have any other questions ask away.
    September 2014 : T6 burst fracture, multilevel fusion from T4-T8
  • MouletMMoulet Posts: 7
    edited 09/24/2015 - 12:43 AM
    I suffered a burst fracture earlier this year. It is at T12 level and is the result of an impact while skiing (tried to use my feet as a brake against some icy bumps). I thought it was bad at the time as it was extremely painful with spasms but because I had had an episode of back spasms in the past, I tried to shrug it off as badly jarred and did not go to a hospital. When I was still no better a week later, I went to see my local GP. They did physical examinations (but no x-rays) and concluded it was soft tissue injury and gave me valium and NSAIDs. Two weeks later, I returned and got the same diagnosis despite pointing out a bony protrusion in the middle of my back that I was sure wasn't there before. This time they recommended physio. Had PT for about six weeks which gave some temporary relief but then started experiencing massive crushing pain around my ribs and side. At the third visit to the GP, I told them my physio recommended getting a scan and I again reminded them I had private medical insurance. GP's reaction was to ask if I had had an x-ray (!!!???). So finally got to see an ortho almost 11 weeks after the accident who instantly suspected a fracture. This was confirmed on an MRI. I have 30-50% anterior crush, with a retropulsed fragment. Ortho said that if he had seen me on day one with this injury he would have put the screws and rods in my back and had me in a brace for three months.

    I had a kyphoplasty for pain relief. Three months on from the kypho, I am still struggling. The bone has now healed in a deformed position. The crush is greater on the right hand side where the pedicle has been smashed and I have lasting problems on that side. In comparison to some, I am probably doing well but I don't feel like it. I can walk, go to the gym and can get by with a couple of painkillers a day but I have approx. 20% thoracolumbar kyphosis with a gibbus that makes sitting uncomfortable and I still have horrible discomfort in the space between my right ribs and hips. Lumbar is tight and stiff. Ribs are tender and now I am getting shoulder problems, fatigue and loss of apetite. I am being referred to another surgeon who deals with spinal deformity to see if anything else can be done but I think it would involve osteotomy and spinal re-construction. I was fit, active and healthy before this and now I feel like my life has been wrecked. It didn't have to be like this, if only my primary had sent me for an x-ray... I am still young and I can't imagine living the rest of my life like this.

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    February 2015 : T12 burst fracture undiagnosed for 12 weeks
    June 2015: kyphoplasty
    December: T12-L3 facet injections
    Currently contemplating reconstruction
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