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Wedge compression fracture L1

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Old 03-18-2007, 11:13 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: uk
Posts: 3
bazzie HB User
Wedge compression fracture L1

Hi, am 4 weeks post suffering a wedge compression fracture to vertebrae L1 after being thrown high speed off a horse onto a fence - ouch!

Spent a week flat on back in hospital - x ray and ct scan showed wedge compression fracture at about 25 degrees - whatever that means anyone??
Also a small bulge into spinal column area. Was told it was borderline stable and was mobilised after a week into a backbrace. Been told I can't travel by car but been given no instructions about not lifting/walking though.

Been for repeat x ray at 3 weeks post accident and dr said angle hadn't deteriorated but it would mend at that angle causing a small amount of deformity. Help! What's a small amount? Don't want to be deformed!!

Still suffering pain on and off and sleeping almost impossible. Dr has said another 3 weeks in brace 3 weeks after that weaning off it then 3 weeks physiotherapy, then i should be back to normal and be able to ride my horse again. Anybody out there had a similar experience and did it have any lasting effects? I'm 37 but worried it'll be a legacy for life from some of the scare stories i've heard! Is horse riding 12 weeks post accident realistic. Doesn't seem possible right now!

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Old 03-19-2007, 01:46 AM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: uk
Posts: 3
bazzie HB User
Re: Wedge compression fracture L1

bump! anyone?

Old 03-19-2007, 04:23 AM   #3
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: western us
Posts: 7,266
ms_west HB User
Re: Wedge compression fracture L1


I am sorry that I can't comment on a compression fracture and just wanted to say hello and that I pray you find some relief soon.

Old 03-19-2007, 06:10 AM   #4
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Location: Virginia
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Re: Wedge compression fracture L1

I've never heard of a wedge compression fracture, but I'd think that if you're going to heal with a little bit of deformity, you'll probably need to modify your activity a little, too. But maybe not. And the deformity may not even show to anyone other than those looking at your x-rays. Your doctor sounds optimistic that you'll have a full recovery. I expect you'll need to carefully experiment once you're done with PT and see if there are lasting effects.

Hope you heal quickly and are able to ride again with no problems.


Old 03-19-2007, 04:31 PM   #5
Mike in MO.
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: malden mo. u.s.a.
Posts: 3
Mike in MO. HB User
Re: Wedge compression fracture L1

Hello, maybe I can be of some help.
First, a little bit of history about me, I (36y/o m) was in an auto acc. when I was 16. I broke my collar bone in half and I think the pain from that, coupled w/ the device that pulled my shoulders way back and the fact that the emerg. room staff told me I would be sore all over for a week or so, I never realized that I had suferred a comp. fracture till a few yrs. later.
Long story short, I went 15yrs. w/o hardly any symptoms and then over the last 6 yrs have suffered on again/off again pain.
The last 2 yrs. have been pretty rough, bad enough that I am 21 days post-op from having L-1/L-2 fused(can't tell if it has helped yet).
Everyone is different and I was younger but I hope and think IMO you will be fine for a pretty long time. Over time though the wedge shape of your disc will start to degenerate(what happened to me), in fact I had a discogram before surgery that pretty much showed that I had no disc or cushion between the vertebral bodies and that bone on bone scraping and instability was present.
Sorry for the long post but if I were you, watch out down the road for pain or weakness in the legs and see your doctor if you start to have stiffness or pain in your back or legs obviously. Good luck and well wishes!!

Old 03-21-2007, 02:07 AM   #6
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: uk
Posts: 3
bazzie HB User
Re: Wedge compression fracture L1

Thanks Mike, from doing a bit of research it seems that there's very little consistency between the way people have been treated for the same injury. Just have to hope that its the right one for you!
Hope your back recovers well too.
Good luck and all the best.

Old 05-22-2010, 01:00 AM   #7
Lynette Mc
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 4
Lynette Mc HB User
Re: Wedge compression fracture L1

I have the same injury from a sledding accident in late February this year. My compression fracture is out 33% so my option was to have surgery or suffer chronic back pain the rest of my life! Not an option for me so I had an intensive 4 hr surgery and recovered in the hospital for 2 weeks taking the most mind blowing drugs, dilotted. Morphine and all the muscle relaxants would not stop the sever back spasams after I arrived at the hospital a day after my injury, due to a snow storm! Anyway I am happy to report that I home recovering in a large corsette backbrace and have no pain! I have 2 titaniam rods in my back securing the area so it can heal and they didn't have to use cadaver bone! yuck! The new way is do a 2nd surgery and remove the rods so they don't cause complications, like I have read about other L1 compression fractures that had the old surgery. You are lucky not be out more then 25% but you should take it easy, do not lift anything more than 10 lbs, wear your brace when active like sitting, walking or moving. I was told not to bend over, very tough to do but use a 'pick-stick' when crap falls on the floor. I imagine you will heal up in a few months and wear your brace. When the dr. talked about long term damage I believe he means stooping of your spine, slightly bent forward. You should seek a professional consultation from an Orthepedic Surgeon, I would not trust a general DR. when we are talking about your back only having one chance to heal properly and straight! I am dedicating the rest of this year to lay low and heal up since I don't want to look like some old lady with a hump back.
Good luck

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