Spondylolisthesis is a condition in which one vertebra slips out of its proper position onto the bone below it. The condition may result from a degenerative disorder or an accident. In rare cases, spondylolisthesis may be acquired at birth.
In children, spondylolisthesis usually occurs between the fifth bone in the lower back (lumbar vertebra) and the first bone in the sacrum (pelvis) area. In adults, the most common cause is abnormal wear on the cartilage and bones caused by conditions such as arthritis. Bone disease and fractures can also cause spondylolisthesis.
Spondylolisthesis may vary from mild to severe, and can potentially be present without symptoms. The condition can produce lordosis (swayback) and in later stages may result in kyphosis (round back). Symptoms may include:
Treatment depends on how severe the slippage is. Your doctor may also recommend:
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