Can spondylolisthesis symptoms affect your everyday life?
Not all patients diagnosed with spondylolisthesis will experience symptoms, but for those who do, the discomfort can disrupt their daily routine, so much so that their quality of life is compromised. Spondylolisthesis is characterized by the forward slippage of one vertebra over the vertebra below it, and the condition is most often diagnosed in the lower back (lower back) region of the spine.
Living with discomfort
In some cases, a displaced vertebra compresses the spinal cord or a nerve root. The occurrence of compression is what will typically give rise to the most painful spondylolisthesis symptoms, which could start to get in the way of living your life. Compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots in the lumbar spine typically leads to lower back pain, as well as radiating pain, tingling, numbness and weakness in the lower extremities. Additionally, lower back stiffness, hamstring tightness and changes to posture and gait may occur. This makes sitting, standing, walking and exercising difficult. Also, sleeping on your stomach or back can add be difficult.
Relieving your pain
To help reduce spondylolisthesis symptoms, a physician will likely recommend that you begin a course of conservative treatments. This treatment plan may include anti-inflammatory drugs and epidural steroid injections to reduce inflammation and pain, physical therapy to improve core muscle strength and the application of heat or ice to relax muscles and numb pain, respectively. Only after attempting these methods for weeks or months with no significant improvement will surgery be considered.
Laser Spine Institute
If you are looking into surgery and are concerned about some of the difficulties involved, consider the minimally invasive surgeries offered at Laser Spine Institute. At Laser Spine Institute, we understand the frustration that you and thousands of others before you must feel when conservative treatment fails to improve your condition, which is why we have developed these state-of-the-art procedures that are often the clinically appropriate first choice versus traditional open spine surgery. Our highly skilled surgeons perform these procedures in an outpatient setting, require only small incisions and leave supporting muscles intact, allowing patients to experience a faster recovery when compared to open neck or back surgery. Contact Laser Spine Institute today to learn more and to find out if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.