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more about Spondylolisthesis


  • Spondylolysis refers to a defect in the vertebra, usually in the lower back.  Spondylolisthesis is a condition in which one vertebra slips on another, leading to the instability of the spine.  Spondylolisthesis can be secondary to spondylolysis.

  • Spondylolysis itself usually does not have symptoms.  The symptoms of Spondylolisthesis vary according to the degree of slippage.
  • Pain and tenderness in the lower back
  • Stiffness of the lower back
  • Buttocks and lower leg pain if the nerve is compressed by a slipped vertebra

  • Spondylolysis may be caused by trauma or a stress fracture in childhood or adolescence.  Some individuals are born with spondylolysis.  The causes of Spondylolisthesis include spondylolysis, trauma, degeneration of spine and congenital abnormality of the vertebra.

  • Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis is easily diagnosed by X-Rays of the lower spine.  A CT or MRI is helpful in diagnosing the nerve compression, and to rule out other causes of lower back pain.

  • Conservative treatment -- if the symptoms of Spondylolisthesis are mild, conservative treatment is recommended.  Conservative treatment includes anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy and a back brace.  If the back pain worsens, patients may need to rest for a few days, gradually increasing the level of activities as the pain goes away.
  • Surgery -- if the conservative treatment does not work and the symptoms are severe, then surgery is recommended.  The goal of surgery is to relieve the compressed nerve and stabilize the spine.

more about Spondylolisthesis

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