Degenerative Spondilolisthesis

Medical Definition

The degenerative spondilolisthesis is medically defined as a condition cause due to the spinal degeneration occurred at the lower lumber spine. In mot of the reported cases, the L4 Vertebrae is most affected. However, the other vertebrae are also equally vulnerable and can be affected by the ailment. Unlike the spondilolisthesis where the vertebrae get displaced of its original position, the degenerative spondilolisthesis is not caused due to any pressure or stress. Neither it is congenital in nature. This ailment is solely related to the growing age. Therefore most of the patients suffering from this problem are old.

Degenerative Spondilolisthesis

Degenerative Spondilolisthesis


As mentioned in the earlier section, the degenerative spondilolisthesis is caused due to the wearing of bones in older age. Apart from this natural reason, there are other two prime reasons that makes the person quite prone to the ailment. They are; Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis.


Osteoporosis is the medical condition where the bone of the patient weakens down gradually. This state is not particularly associated with old age. Even the middle aged man and mostly the woman fall prey to this problem. With the bones getting weaker, the vertebrae become quite vulnerable to the fractures even in absence of any strenuous physical activity. Such vertebral fractures hence push the spinal bones to slip and shift. This marks the beginning of multiple levels of degenerative spondilolisthesis. It is a serious issue because once the process has started, it is quite impossible to stop it or prevent the spinal bones from it.    

Osteoarthritis is defined by the increase in the bone to bone contact. Here in, because of this wearing and tearing, the bones looses their intactness and thus become vulnerable. The spinal bones are also not spared by this ailment. They also become prone to slippage. Many spinal levels can get affected.

If and when occurred at the older age, the degenerative spondilolisthesis is mildly painful. But if the condition has occurred as a result of some other ailment, the condition can be serious and painful. But the cases of such issue are rare.
If the vertebrae get displaced by higher percentage, the patient will suffer from excruciating pain caused by the pressure exerted on the nerves.



When the condition is reported in elderly patients, it is actually a harmless situation. It may appear problematic on the X-Ray report but the person will feel mild or no discomfort because of degenerative spondilolisthesis. However, if the degenerative spondilolisthesis is caused due to other issues like osteoporosis of osteoarthritis, the person may require surgical help. Though the surgery may provide temporary relief but is certainly not the permanent solution. Particularly in the case of Osteoporosis, there is no way to cease the damage in the bones. The only thing you can do is prevent yourself from falling into its prey.

Last but certainly not the least, a healthy routine and a wholesome diet keeps us safe from many health hazards. Therefore, it is better late than never! Adapt a fit routine, make your diet to be more nutritious and enjoy the life to the fullest.

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5 Responses to “Degenerative Spondilolisthesis”

  1. Lumbar Spine | Rochester Spinal Decompression Center | (585) 598-9206 Says:

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  5. Causes and Treatment of Degenerative Spondylolisthesis | spondylolisthesis Says:

    […] Spondylolisthesis is term that comes out from two of the Greek words, “spondylo” which means “spine” and “listhesis” meaning to slide or to slip. As the term indicates that Spondylolisthesis is a condition in which one of the vertebra slips over the other vertebra. Due to aging, many degenerative changes occur in the human body, especially in the bone ligaments, tissues and joints. Similarly, such changes also occur in the human spine as it is a constructed network of small bones. When these degenerative changes fail to hold the position of the bones and make them slide over one another, such condition is termed as the “Degenerative Spondylolisthesis”. […]

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