Lumbar spondylolisthesis

Lumbar spondylolisthesis

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Credit: JOHN T. ALESI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Lumbar spondylolisthesis. Labelled artworks of side views of the lumbar and sacral regions of the spine (front of the spine at left) in a case of spondylolisthesis. This is a condition where a vertebra has slipped out of alignment with the vertebra below it. Between each vertebra are discs of fibrocartilage (blue). A lateral view of the lumbosacral region of a normal spine is at left, with the same region at centre in a case of grade 1 L4-L5 spondylolisthesis. At upper right is a sagittal section through the lumbar spine, showing the narrowing (stenosis) of the nerve canal caused by this condition. The pressure on the nerves causes pain, and severe cases may require surgery.

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