What is Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis?
Also known as: Spondylolysis, Spondylolisthesis
What are Spinal Infections?
When a teen athlete has lower back pain, the most common causes are spondylolysis or spondylolisthesis.
This condition involves a stress fracture in a vertebra in the lower spine.
This condition is the progression of spondylolitis. The small fracture weakens the bone, causing the vertebra to shift out of place.
Causes, Incidence and Risk Factors
- Some children are born with a congenital predisposition to develop these conditions.
- For others, it is caused by stress to the spine caused by sports such as gymnastics, dance, weight lifting and football.
- The most common symptom is pain that spreads across the lower back.
- Pain may feel like muscle strain.
Diagnosis and Tests
are usually diagnosed following:
- X-ray of the lower back
- An MRI or CT scan
- EOS Scan
- Taking time off from sports activities to allow healing to occur
- Use Ibuprofen to reduce pain
- Use of a back brace, if recommended
- Stretching and strengthening exercise may help prevent reoccurrence.
- Surgery may be needed if vertebra continue to slip and does not respond to nonsurgical care.
Reviewed by: Stephen Graham George Jr., MD
This page was last updated on: 3/23/2018 2:14:50 PM
From the Newsdesk
Dr. Harry Shufflebarger, Director of the Division of Spine Surgery at Nicklaus Children's Hospital is featured as part of this half hour segment in the Planet TV series for broadcast on national television.
Our 10 year old son, Ryan, tore his Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) in his left leg this past summer. I have frequently been asked, isn’t 10 years old very young to tear an ACL? Yes, for children that young, it is rare, but not unheard of. And for adolescents and teenagers, ACL injuries are occurring more frequently, likely due to early sport specialization, and the increase in travel sports and year-round training.