New York Spine Institute Spine Services


New York Spine Institute is committed to providing our Spondylolisthesis patients with the highest level of care and personalized treatment. Our offices span throughout the greater New York City area and are staffed with board-certified health care professionals to help you get your health back on track.*

The spinal condition, spondylolisthesis, causes one of the lower vertebrae to splip forward onto the bone beneath it. In children and adolescents, this slippage most often happens during periods of rapid growth. Doctors will commonly describe spondylolisthesis as either a low grade or high grade, depending upon the amount of slippage that has happened.*

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Why Choose New York Spine Institute

Quality Care

Part of New York Spine Institute’s mission is to provide each and every one of our clients with the highest quality care by the top spinal experts.

Industry Leaders

NYSI’s team of physicians, led by medical director Alexandre B. de Moura, M.D., FAAOS, are industry leaders that specialize in neck and back disorders.

Multiple Languages

To live up to our mission of custom, personalized care, our staff speaks a variety of languages including Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, German and Russian.

Understanding the Causes Of Your Spondylolisthesis

The most common symptom of spondylolisthesis is lower back pain. It’s not unusual for a person to develop the lesion (spondylolysis) at a younger age and not have any symptoms until they are in their 30’s. A vertebra might be defective from the time a person is born, or it may have been broken by trauma or a stress fracture. Vertebrae can also be torn down by infection or disease. This spine condition can commonly occur in children and adolescents who actively participate in athletics.*

The main symptoms of Spondylolisthesis include*:

  • Lower back and/or leg pain
  • Sciatic pain (an aching in one or both legs), or a tired feeling in the legs are long periods or standing or walking
  • Tight hamstring muscles
  • Decreased flexibility in the lower back
  • Difficulty and pain with extending and arching the back backwards

Diagnosing Your Spondylolisthesis

Spondylolisthesis is diagnosed through a three-step process, and it’s important that your diagnosis comes from a board-certified spine specialist. This process starts with an overview of your past medical history, followed by a review of the symptoms you’re currently experiencing. The next step is a physical examination, where a physician will examine your range of motion, flexibility, and question you about muscle weakness or neurological symptoms. To complete diagnosis, imaging tests such as an X-ray or an MRI scan can be conducted to either confirm the diagnosis and/or rule out any other causes.*

It’s important to note that Spondylolisthesis is categorized into five major types:

  • Dysplastic: a defect present from birth in the formation of part of the vertebra called the facet
  • Isthmic: a defect in a part of the vertebra called the pars interarticularis
  • Degenerative: occurs when the joints, through arthritis, lose their ability to keep the alignment of the spine in its normal position
  • Traumatic: trauma or injury to the vertebrae.  A fracture of the pedicle, lamina or facets can cause the vertebra to slip forward
  • Pathologic: structural weakness of the bone, usually caused by a disease, such as a tumor or other bone disease

Treatment Options For Spondylolisthesis

Spondylolisthesis does not always require surgical treatment options. Depending on your specific symptoms and type of spondylolisthesis, non-surgical treatment options may include pain medications and ice or heat application. Generally, there are four categories of treatment plans that patients and their physician may choose from*:

  • Activity modification that may include a short period of rest, avoiding standing or walking for long periods, avoiding active exercise, and avoiding activities that require bending backwards.
  • Manual manipulation performed by a trained health professional to reduce pain by mobilizing painful joint dysfunction
  • Epidural injection, typically received by patients suffering from severe leg pain, which can be effective in increasing functions.*
  • Surgery is rarely needed, but may be considered if the pain is disabling and interferes with daily life. Surgery can help patients experiencing progressive neurological deterioration.

*The effectiveness of diagnosis and treatment will vary by patient and condition. New York Spine Institute does not guarantee certain results.

Need a Consultation for Your Spondylolisthesis?

The physicians at New York Spine Institute are board-certified orthopedic surgeons specializing in surgery of the spine and spine-related disorders. Our board-certified health care professionals are committed not only to the initial diagnosis and plan of action, but the follow-up treatment as well. We have numerous office locations throughout Greater New York Area, Long Island, and Westchester areas for your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and receive a free consultation.

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