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TriHealth Orthopedic & Sports Institute


Spondylolisthesis can keep you from the activities you enjoy and the daily responsibilities of life. The team at TriHealth Orthopedics & Sports Institute and Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine are here to help you get back the things you love most. We’ll get to the bottom of what’s causing your pain with an accurate diagnosis. We use state-of-the-art imaging and create a treatment plan that relieves pain and eases symptoms.


Spondylolisthesis occurs when one vertebra slips out of place and rests on the vertebra below. This slippage can cause a pinched nerve, resulting in pain. It’s the most common back problem in teens, often happening during a growth spurt. Older adults can also experience degenerative spondylolisthesis. This can start to occur after age 40.

Spondylolisthesis causes

Several factors can cause spondylolisthesis, including:

  • Congenital (birth) disability
  • Fractured vertebra
  • Natural wear and tear from age
  • Repetitive stress or twisting of the lower back
  • Sudden growth spurt (teens)
  • Tumors

Spondylolisthesis symptoms

Sometimes, there are no symptoms of spondylolisthesis. Other times, individuals may experience:

  • Low back pain
  • Muscle spasms in the hamstring
  • Pain from a pinched nerve

Spondylolisthesis treatment

At TriHealth Orthopedic & Sports Institute and Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, your team of spine experts will always recommend starting with a conservative approach to treatment. That may include:

  • Physical therapy – Stretching and strengthening exercises, guided by a certified physical therapist, can improve flexibility and stability of the spine, build strength and endurance and even improve your balance. All these can help reduce your symptoms.
  • Medicine – Over the counter and prescription medicine can help relieve chronic pain, reduce inflammation and help you find comfort.
  • Steroid injections – Corticosteroid injections reduce inflammation and help relieve pain.
  • Acupuncture – Thin needles are inserted into specific spots along the spine to trigger the release of certain chemicals into the body, helping reduce pain. Acupuncture, along with traditional treatment, like pain management or physical therapy is helpful.
  • Massage – Medical massage therapy can help reduce inflammation, ease pain and provide relief from certain back conditions. Your doctor may recommend massage therapy along with other treatments.
  • Spinal fusion – If your symptoms persist and they continue to interfere with daily life, your provider may recommend surgery. Spinal fusion is the most common procedure to treat spondylolisthesis. It helps relieve pressure on surrounding nerves, re-align the spine and stabilize it with hardware.

Spondylolisthesis risk factors

You may be at higher risk of spondylolisthesis:

  • Congenital disabilities of the spine
  • Family history of back problems
  • Occupation or activity that puts repeated stress on the lower back

Spondylolisthesis prevention

Lower your risk of developing spondylolisthesis and keep your spine healthy:

  • Eat healthy
  • Exercise regularly
  • Lift with your legs; not your back
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Sit up straight
  • Strengthen back and core muscles

Make an appointment

At TriHealth Orthopedics & Sports Institute and Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, our spinal specialists are here to help you get stronger and return to good health. Find the right treatment for your spondylolisthesis. To learn more or make an appointment with an orthopedic specialist: Call TriHealth at 513 246 2300 or our orthopedic partner, Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, at 513 354 3700.

TriHealth Orthopedic and Spine Institute
TOSI: 513 246 2300
Beacon: 513 354 3700
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