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Thoracic Vertebra Compression Fractures... 3 months enough?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Injury: Landed upside down on a mountain bike, at moderate speed. Poorly taken X-Ray (of neck only) showed nothing. Two weeks later, when I feel like I am having a bit of trouble swallowing, I end up at an ENT, and then inside an MRI machine and find out: minor compression fractures of 3 thoracic vertebra and minor fracture of larynx. 

 

Doc says: literally (but we have a small language barrier), "No gymnastics, but anything else is OK." "No cycling-- but if you really want to go on a weekend tour tomorrow, you can, and you won't really damage yourself, but you might set back the healing by a bit... "but take it easy, and then don't bike for a bit after." Take a bunch of ibuprofen, and here's 10 days of Doxy so you don't get an infection in the epiglottis (it's inflamed). 

 

I'm wondering if any of you have any experience with a similar injury (the vertebra)? My understanding is that by around 3 months post injury, I should be fine to engage in any activities I want. Bones were never "broken through," and never unstable. The weekend tour was fine (a bit sore by the end of the day), as was a 112 mile ride the following week. I've basically rested since. 

 

I primarily ski off-piste, enjoy natural kickers, but don't usually find myself sending anything over 10 feet. Interestingly, ~ 1+ month post injury my back almost never hurts, but my neck is sometimes stiff in the morning. 

 

So, how long did it take you to recover? And did you find it painful to ski at the 3 to 4 month mark? 

post #2 of 6

what does your doctor say?   this is a neck not a finger..  why take a risk?   

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Doc said no risk of long-term issues... probably not even arthritic. And no increased risk of serious acute injury from continued exercise. That's why I am interested in personal accounts of pain and discomfort from similar injuries in off piste skiers... not medical advice.
post #4 of 6

My Bf had a compression fracture of his t6? vertebrate after badly landing a jump snowboarding last year, he was back to snowboarding (with a back protecter 8 weeks later but did not jump for 6 months. He did do some off piste but avoided any drops or trees that were not EXTREMELY widely spaced for 6 months. Touch wood he has no problems. If I were you though I would seek advice from a doctor without a language barrier. You only get one spine, why risk it?

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thanks, lilywhite, for the anecdote. Am I accurate to take it your bf was without pain when he returned to snowboarding? 

 

I was overstating the language barrier... I thought it was funny she chose the word "gymnastics." She actually spoke near-perfect English, and I was there with my longtime, German-born girlfriend. So the understanding was complete. 

 

As for my recovery, I think it's approaching 2 months post-injury now. And for almost all things I'm pain-free again. Back to chin-ups, decline push-ups, planking (the exercise, not meme), one-leg squats, cycling, stability ball work, etc. I've been trying to stay low-impact, for the most part, but slowly increasing back, neck, and core strength in advance of the season. 

post #6 of 6

 He was not without pain for for about 6 months, the degree of pain was signifigantly better within 2 months. He was VERY lazy with physio though.

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