How is a cervical spine fracture treated?

A minor (compression) fracture is often treated with a cervical collar or brace worn for six to eight weeks until the bone heals on its own. A more severe or complex fracture may require traction, or surgical repair or a spinal fusion.

How long does a cervical fracture take to heal?

How long does it take to recover? A simple break that doesn’t affect your spinal cord can be treated with a neck brace worn for six to eight weeks until the bone heals. More complicated breaks can require surgery and other treatments such as a stiff neck brace for up to three months.

How painful is a cervical fracture?

Patients with cervical fractures typically have significant, localized neck pain and stiffness. However, patients with other injuries may complain of pain in other areas and not notice the severity of neck pain.

What vertebral body is most commonly injured in cervical spine fractures?

Most cervical spine fractures occur predominantly at 2 levels: one third of injuries occur at the level of C2, and one half of injuries occur at the level of C6 or C7. Most fatal cervical spine injuries occur in upper cervical levels, either at craniocervical junction C1 or C2.

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What causes cervical fracture?

A fracture, or break, in one of the cervical vertebrae is commonly called a broken neck. Cervical fractures usually result from high-energy trauma, such as automobile crashes or falls. In elderly people, ground-level falls, such as falling off a chair, can result in a cervical fracture. Athletes are also at risk.

How serious is a C2 fracture?

Injuries to the C1 and C2 vertebrae are rare, accounting for only 2% of spinal injuries each year. However, they are also considered to be the worst spinal cord injury that it is possible to sustain, and often fatal.

How long does a neck injury take to heal?

While most neck strains take a few weeks to completely heal, symptoms tend to mostly go away in less than a week. In general, severe muscle strains tend to take closer to 12 weeks to heal, but these rarely occur in the neck without the involvement of a more serious injury.

How long do you have to wear neck brace after cervical fusion?

When to wear your brace

You will wear the brace after surgery until your spine has healed or fused, a period that can range from 4 weeks to 6 months. If you are fitted for your brace prior to surgery, practice taking the brace on and off to increase your familiarity with it.

How serious is a C3 fracture?

A C3 spinal cord injury results in quadriplegia, which is paralysis of the arms, trunk, and legs. Depending on the severity of your spinal cord injury, you may be able to move and/or feel sensation below your level of injury.

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How Serious is a C6 fracture?

A C6 spinal cord injury affects the cord near the base of the neck. Injuries to this area of the spinal cord can result in loss of sensation or function of everything in the body from the top of the ribcage on down, including all four extremities.

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