Dee Why Chiropractor Treatments

Low back spondylolisthesis

Lumbar (low back) spondylolisthesis suggests that the stabilisation of vertebrae has been reduced and allowed some slippage. The condition occurs when a vertebra slips forward in relation to the bone below it. The causes of spondylolisthesis include:

Congenital spondylolisthesis. This is a condition someone is born with. It results from a defect in the formation of the facet, which is the part of the vertebra that joints to the next vertebra.

Degenerative spondylolisthesis. Degeneration (wear and tear) of the vertebrae may allow some forward slippage.

Isthmic spondylolisthesis. This is a form of spondylolisthesis that occurs as a result of spondylolysis. Spondylolysis is a stress fracture in the vertebrae. These fractures weaken the bone and allow forward slippage.

Pathologic spondylolisthesis. Forward slippage can occur when a vertebra becomes diseased. There are many different disease processes that affect vertebrae such as tumours, tuberculosis, infection and metabolic bone disease.

Iatrogenic spondylolisthesis. This occurs after a surgical medical procedure.

Traumatic spondylolisthesis. This can occur after a significant fall or trauma such as a motor vehicle accident or a fall from a height.


The most common symptom is pain that radiates from the low back to the buttock area of one or both legs. Hamstring tightness in one or both legs is also common. There may also be some tenderness about the spine where the spondylolisthesis is. Some people will experience no symptoms at all. Neurological symptoms may also be present in some grade and types of spondylolisthesis.


The treatment of spondylolisthesis depends on the type, grade and nature of the spondylolisthesis. Chiropractic and physiotherapy treatment is useful in some types while other types will need specialist medical and surgical care.

Other causes of low back pain

The following conditions are some causes of low back pain.