By Bernard Preston

Two fractured vertebrae , lower lumbar

by Donna
(Springfield, Ohio )

May 23rd of this year was getting off motorcycle. Foot got caught and I fell backward on cement driveway, fracturing L1 and L3. One was a compound fracture and the other one burst causing bone fragments. Two months ago they cemented the compound fracture, leaving the burst one to heal on it’s own. Well the cement didn’t work because the mri shows it has fallen and is worse. The only thing they can offer me is shots and go to therapy. Also mri shows arthritis, spinal stenosis, and bruised bone. My life has changed forever as I cannot stand or sit in a hard chair for very long as my back from between shoulder blade, down to my hips kills me. Also it’s still very hard to turn over in bed. I’m scared I will always be like this . Also I don’t want to end up bent over. I am 69 years old and was very active til now. Do you have any suggestions as to what I should do? Will my back heal on its own or should I have a second opinion? The longer I wait and have to have surgery again, then I will have to start the healing process all over again. Thank you in advance for any information you can give me.
Sincerely,
Donna

Hello Donna,
A sad tale, and one I can identify with because I'm your age, and also a hunting, fishing and shooting guy.
My philosophy is that as we age there are something we have to accept, but some not, and knowing the distinction is the trick. You'll always find someone who will do another op, but is it right for you? Remember the anaesthetic too.
I have a few suggestions.
1. Every single morning before getting out of bed, without fail or exception, do some gentle back exercises for five or ten minutes. Easy light stuff, pulling your knees to the chest and pelvic tilts and others that you will find at my other site, Chiropractic-Help.com.
In fact because of the degree of disability and pain you are experiencing, I would spend two minutes several times a day doing them.

2. Accept that there are somethings you should never do again; like the vacuum cleaner, lifting the deep freeze and grand piano and so on; you have figure out what they are, but some are obvious, right?

3. When making a bed, get down on both knees.

4. When picking something off the floor, don't bend, go down on ONE knee. One will feel more comfortable than the other.

5. Find a good masseuse and go regularly; lie either on a thick cushion under your pelvis, butt up in the air, or on your side, not flat on your belly.

6. If there's a heated pool nearby, think of a swim several times a week. Take a regular walk every day, even if just a few minutes.

Be strong, use alternating ice and heat for pain control, and keep doing those exercises. Lots of them.

Dr B

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