Table 5-5Clinical Consequences of Spine Fractures

SymptomsSignsFunctionFuture risks
Back pain (acute, chronic)

Sleep disturbance



Decreased self-esteem

Fear of future fracture and falling

Reduced quality of life

Early satiety
Height loss


Decreased lumbar lordosis

Protuberant abdomen

Reduced lung function

Weight loss
Impaired activities in daily living (e.g., bathing, dressing)

Difficulty fitting clothes due to kyphosis, protuberant abdomen

Difficulty bending, lifting, descending stairs, cooking
Increased risk of fracture

Increased risk of death

Source: Papaioannou et al. 2002. Reprinted from The American Journal of Medicine, Diagnosis and management of vertebral fractures in elderly adults. 113(3): 220–228 (2002), with permission from Excerpta Medica, Inc.

From: 5, The Burden of Bone Disease

Cover of Bone Health and Osteoporosis
Bone Health and Osteoporosis: A Report of the Surgeon General.
Office of the Surgeon General (US).
Rockville (MD): Office of the Surgeon General (US); 2004.

NCBI Bookshelf. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.