The spinal column contains 33 vertebrae that are interlocked and stacked on top of one another. When one vertebra slips forward relative to an adjacent vertebra, spondylolisthesis occurs.
There are many possible reasons for the spine condition, such as a congenital defective joint in the spinal column, an accident or trauma that has caused severe damage to a joint, stress fracture due to overuse, infection, or arthritis.
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While spondylolisthesis is more common in older adults because of wear and tear of the spine, it can also affect younger individuals who participate in sports or other physical activities, including gymnastics, weightlifting, and others.
Its symptoms include pain, numbness, or weakness in different areas, such as the back, buttock, or legs. When the leg or back is bended or used, the pain generally worsens. There are also rare cases where the patient suffers loss of bladder or bowel control.
The condition then can be diagnosed through X-rays or other image scanning methods to determine which vertebra has slipped out of its place.
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Treatment of spondylolisthesis usually involves just pain relievers and physical therapy, depending on the grade of the condition. However, there are instances when surgery is needed to apply decompression or fusion.
Neurosurgeon Joseph Yazdi, M.D. specializes in treating different medical conditions in the spine. Aside from his medical practice, he has also held teaching positions at Hahnemann University Hospital, the Musculoskeletal Research Center at Globus Medical Inc., and the Saint Louis School of Medicine. Visit this website to read more about Dr. Yazdi’s medical expertise.