A 48-year-old member asked:

Please tell me, could a fractured vertebrae heal itself?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Paul Gause
Orthopedic Surgery - Spine 21 years experience
Frequently yes: There are many ways to fracture the spine. Most fractures will heal with time. Often bracing is used to help stabilize the bone to assist healing. There are certain types of fractures where surgery is recommended, but this determination should probably be made by a spine specialist such as an orthopedic surgeon or neurosurgeon.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Edward Hellman
Orthopedic Surgery 31 years experience
Yes: Yes, a fractured vertebrae can "heal itself". The question is rather is it in good alignment that it we heal without chronic pain resulting from it, and is there anything about the nature of the injury that would put you at risk for neurological sequela. For that we would need to examine you directly and look at the scans of your specific fracture.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated May 30, 2019
Connect with a U.S. board-certified doctor by text or video anytime, anywhere.
$44 video appointments with $19/month membership*
*Billed $57 every 3 months. Cancel anytime.


Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.