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Grade 2 Spondylolisthesis: Lots of questions...
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Grade 2 Spondylolisthesis: Lots of questions...

Hello.  This last year has been a rough one for me as I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma 8 months ago.  I've had several PET and CT scans since being diagnosed, and they also show that I also have grade 2 Spondylolisthesis.  I have not yet gone to a doctor for this since my main focus thus far has been treating the cancer, but it sure would explain the lower back pain I've had for years.  I guess in the past I just chalked it up to getting older (I'm 37).  My lower back has really been bothering me lately and I think I better go see my regular doctor now that I know about the Spondylolisthesis, although it sounds like there really isn't much that can be done about it.  The pain seems to be the worse when I'm sleeping in bed (especially on a strange bed).  The pain radiates to my buttocks and I often have a hard time lifting my butt up off the bed in order to turn over due to weakness in my legs.  Sometimes when I get up from sitting too long it feels like my legs start to give away.  It also hurts to bend over very far and even when I cough.  Are these all symptoms of Spondylolisthesis?

My PET scan says "Incidental grade II spondylolisthesis is noted at L5-S1 with bilateral pars defects."  The CT scan says "Incidental pars interarticularis defects are seen at L5."  This is all that is noted on these scans.  Can someone interpret what this means for me and can it get worse without medical intervention?  Is this caused from an injury or just something degenerative with age?  Thanks.
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I'm going to take a chance here ande assume u have isthmic spondylolisthesis. Its a common one that pplo who have spondylolisthesis have. Pars defects begin in childhood btwn the ages of 5-13. Its enhanced by certain activities like gymnastics and football. By the time one hits adolescence stage, it can turn into pars fractures on either side of the vertabrae. In adulthood, it can turn into spondylolisthesis where the upper lever is shifting on the bottom vertabrae. About 7% of the populoation experiences this. I have a grade 2-3 isthmic spondylolisthesis that became symptommatic in my early 30's (I am 37). March 21st of 2009, I began to experience out of the blue leg weakness to where I could not control the muscles of my legs and walked like someone with a bad case of cerebral palsy. The next day, the calf charley horses began. 3 days later, the intense varying levels of different pain and burning and electrical sensations ande leg weakness became my daily companion for 11 months. I had fusion surgery with instrumentation at l5/s1 as my DDD at this level and spondylolisthesis caused severe bilateral foraminal stenosis which resulted in significant bilateral root nerve compression. I understand ur situation. I tried everything non-invasive first. My chiro advised me to seek a neurosurgeon when he saw my mri results in march of 2009. I wish u the utmost best!!!! I'm here if u ever need to talk. *hugs*
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Thank you, squirtatious.  I had no idea that pars defects begins in childhood.  So are pars defects caused by an injury or just made worse by injury?  I do remember slipping on some concrete steps when I was about 12 or 13 years old and basically bouncing off several of them with my tailbone.  I was in quite a bit of pain for what seemed like weeks.  I never did go see a doctor.  Can grade II get worse and turn to grade III?  I'm not too excited about doing surgery and I'm hoping there are some less invasive treatments I can do to help keep the pain and weakness at bay.  I wonder if certain back exercises would help, or possibly theraputic massage.  So far I've been self medicating with ibuprofen, icy hot and a heating pad.  It helps to some degree, but I don't want to take too much ibuprofen for fear of hurting my liver or kidneys.    

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Avatar_f_tn
Pars defects I believe, can be heriditary. We have a weakened disposition in our spines in the areas that later turn can turn into pars defects. Id recomment non-invasive and conservative methods first. Sometimes the grade of a person's spondylolisthesis CAN change. Id use surgery only as an absolute last resort to decompress severely compressed nerve roots.
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907672_tn?1381029323
Okay, thank you.  It's good to get advice from someone else who's been through it.  I plan on calling the doctor on Monday to set up an appointment.
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Avatar_f_tn
An mri will rule out any root nerve compression or foraminal stenosis. Id recommend a standing mri as those are more accurate to show any real issues going on within!!! Ur very welcome. My oldest son was diagnosed with isthmic spondylolisthesis 2 years ago at the age of 18 thru my chiropractor. His is at the same level but is not symptommatic thank the heavens!!! Havnt had my other two kids exrayed as of yet
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