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3850 Spondylolysis



Spondylolysis is a specific defect in the connection between vertebrae, the bones that make up the spinal column. This defect can lead to small breaks in the vertebrae that can then weaken the bones to an extent that the vertebra may slip out of place, a condition called Spondylolisthesis. This is a very common cause of low back pain.

Symptoms of Spondylolysis

Most people with Spondylolysis have no symptoms and some don't even know they have the condition. When symptoms occur, low back pain is the most common. This pain then spreads across the lower back and you might feel a slight muscle strain. This pain gets worse with vigorous exercise. Symptoms appear during the teenage growth spurt years and the typical age of a person diagnosed with Spondylolysis is 15 to 16 years.


There may be a hereditary aspect to Spondylolysis. Some sports such as weight lighting or activities that put a great deal of stress on the bones in the lower back can also cause Spondylolysis. This condition can cause spasms that stiffen the back and tighten the hamstring muscles, resulting in changes to posture and gait.

Diagnosis & Treatment

X-rays of the lower back spine will show the position of the vertebra. Initial treatment for this condition is always conservative and is aimed at reducing pain, permitting the fracture to heal and returning the person to normal function. The affected person should take a break from sports and other activities until the pain subsides. Medications and a program of exercise and physical therapy will help increase pain free movement and thus, improve flexibility and muscle strength.

So, if you have been diagnosed with Spondylolysis, it might be time for you to rest and do the exercises and bracing religiously to relieve pain and swelling.



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