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Spondylolysis is the degeneration or deficient development of the articulating part of the vertebrae. It occurs in 6% of the general population and occurs only in persons who are able to stand upright and walk, which is thought to be a causative factor. The condition is virtually nonexistent among newborns, but exists in 5% of 6 year olds. Spondylolysis is more common in persons who participate is sports such as diving, weight lifting, wrestling and gymnastics - activities that require repetitive hyperextension.
In combination with other factors, spondylolysis may permit forward slippage of one vertebra on the one below, producing a spondylolisthesis. This occurs most commonly at the last lumbar vertebra (L5) causing it to slip on the first sacral vertebra (S1).
Many young persons with spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis may have no symptoms. Persons often develop symptoms during the preadolescent growth spurt. Magnitude of symptoms does not always correlate with the severity of slip.
Many persons require no treatment for the condition. Persons with spondylolysis or low-grade spondylolisthesis may be managed conservatively without surgery. Skeletally immature persons with slippage greater that 30-50% are at increased risk for progression and are considered candidates for spinal fusion without delay.
Get the Facts... With your MediFocus Guide

The Medifocus Guide on Spondylolisthesis provides answers to the following important questions and medical issues:
  • What are the most common symptoms of spondylolisthesis?
  • Are there any recognized risk factors for developing spondylolisthesis?
  • What kinds of medical tests are used to establish the diagnosis of spondylolisthesis?
  • What is the current standard of care for the treatment of spondylolisthesis?
  • What treatment options are available for the management of spondylolisthesis?
  • Are there any promising new developments or potential breakthroughs in treatment?
  • Who are the most notable medical authorities who specialize in spondylolisthesis?
  • Where are the leading hospitals and centers of research for spondylolisthesis?
  • What are the most important questions to ask my doctor about spondylolisthesis?
What Your Doctor Reads:

This MediFocus Guide contains an extensive listing of citations and abstracts of recent journal articles that have been published about this condition in trustworthy medical journals. This is the same type of information that is available to physicians and other health care professionals. A partial selection of journal articles that are abstracted in this MediFocus Guide includes:
  • Iatrogenic spondylolysis leading to contralateral pedicular stress fracture and unstable spondylolisthesis: a case report.
    Spine. 2000
  • Management of spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis in the pediatric and adolescent population.
    Orthopedic Clinics of North America. 1999
  • Management of degenerative disc disease above an L5-S1 segment requiring arthrodesis.
    Spine. 1999
  • Spondylolisthesis in children. Cause, natural history, and management.
    Spine. 1999
  • Conditions of the spine.
    Adolescent Medicine. 1998
  • Complications in spinal fusion.
    Orthopedic Clinics of North America. 1998
  • The role of surgery in the management of low back pain.
    Baillieres Clinical Rheumatology. 1998
  • Is there increased intervertebral mobility in isthmic adult spondylolisthesis? A matched comparative study using roentgen stereophotogrammetry.
    Spine. 2000
  • Traumatic spondylolisthesis of the axis: treatment rationale based on the stability of the different fracture types.
    European Spine Journal. 2000
  • Sagittal plane configuration of the sacrum in spondylolisthesis.
    Spine. 2000
MediFocus Guides... When You Need Trustworthy Medical Information understands that consumers who are facing serious medical issues need access to credible, up-to-date medical information to help them make informed health-care decisions. That's why we've developed the MediFocus Guides...the most advanced and trustworthy patient research guides for over 200 chronic and life-threatening conditions. Each MediFocus Guide includes a detailed overview of the condition including information about diagnosis, treatment options, cutting-edge research, and new developments; excerpts of important journal articles from the current medical literature focusing on standard treatments and treatment options; a directory of leading authors and medical institutions who specialize in the treatment of the condition; and a listing of organizations and support groups where you can obtain additional information about the illness.
MediFocus Guides are the perfect solution for consumers who wish to gain an in-depth understanding of their medical issue and avail themselves of the same type of professional level medical information that is used by physicians and other health-care professionals to help then in the clinical decision making process.
Medifocus: Your Personal Guide to Trustworthy Medical Information Get more data on this topic.
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