What is Spondylolisthesis

Medical Defination

Spondylolisthesis is the medical condition wherein one of the vertebras of the patient’s spine shifts forward or backward in regards with the adjoining vertebras. This displacement can be of a single vertebra or the whole vertebral column.

Spondylolisthesis

Spondylolisthesis

Spine Structure

A hale and hearty spine is flexible. It is capable of moving, rotating, bending and extending. The high flexibility is because of the spine structure. Here the vertebrae are piled one of the other. The vertebrae are the bones that protect the spinal chord.  They are held intact with the support of muscles, discs, joints and ligaments. All of them together make it possible for a spine to move in different planes. When any of the vertebra or the vertebral column slips from its original position due to any reason, the patient suffers from the condition called Spondylolisthesis.

Types Of Spondylolisthesis

This medical state is broadly categorized in to two types; Anterolisthesis and Retrolisthesis.

In the state of Anterolisthesis, the upper portion of the vertebral body moves forward as compared to the rest of the lower vertebral body. The seriousness of the problem can be measured according to the amount of the slippage. It is measured by grading it on the scale of 1-4. For instance, grade1 slippage is considered to be mild while grade 4 displacement is serious and cannot be left unattended.

Retrolisthesis is the state where the vertebral body is displaced backwards in respect to the adjoining structure.

Symptoms Of Spondylolisthesis

There are no direct symptoms associated with this medical state. The symptoms are so generalised that many people who have this condition do not even know it. Moreover, the people knowing that they have this issue do not find them selves ill or suffering.

However, the patient having spondylolisthesis may occasionally suffer from walking abnormalities. He/she may complain of constant pain is lower back. Pain in leg is also very common in the people with this condition. Such muscle pain exaggerates with the physical activity and mellows down on taking rest. If the problem becomes severe, the patient might face postural abnormalities.

Causes Of Spondylolisthesis

There can be several major causes behind this medical problem.

  1. The person may have been born with it. This condition is called congenital spondylolisthesis.
  2. If the person is actively engaged in sports like gymnastics, weight lifting, soccer, he/she is quite vulnerable to this condition. Such sports involve hyperextension of the spine and thus put it at the risk of spondylolisthesis.
  3. There is a condition when the new bones begin to grow. They work like the pars heals. As a result, the pars begin to stretch. Thus the elongated pars push the vertebra forward resulting in this condition.
  4. The body becomes vulnerable to this condition with the growing age. As the person grow old, his bones become week and hence more susceptible to the injuries.

The ailment is though problematic but curable. But all you have to do is take a good care of your self.

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