Spinal fractures can vary widely in severity. While some fractures are very serious injuries that require emergency treatment, other fractures can be the result of bones weakened by osteoporosis. Most spinal fractures occur in the thoracic (mid-back) and lumbar spine (lower back) or at the connection of the two (the “thoracolumbar junction”). Fractures of the thoracic and lumbar spine may result from high-energy trauma, such as: a car or motorcycle crash; a fall from height; a sports accident; or a violent act, such as a gunshot wound. Many times, these patients have additional serious injuries that require rapid treatment, and, their spinal cord may also be injured depending on the severity of their fracture. Spinal fractures may also be caused by bone insufficiency. For example, people with osteoporosis, tumors, or other underlying conditions that weaken the bone can fracture a vertebra even during low-impact activities such as reaching or twisting. These fractures may develop unnoticed over a period of time, with no symptoms or discomfort until a bone breaks. Treatment depends on the severity of the fracture and whether the patient has other associated injuries.