L4-5 spondylolisthesis, X-ray

L4-5 spondylolisthesis, X-ray

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Credit: Sovereign/ISM/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Spondylolisthesis. Coloured X-ray side view of the lower back of a 58 year old woman showing spondylolisthesis (indicated by arrow). This is the backward displacement of a vertebra (spinal bone) relative to the one above it. Here it is between the lumbar vertebrae L4 and L5. The condition can be due to a hereditary bone disorder, but can also be caused by trauma. It typically causes back pain, and the displaced vertebra may put pressure on nearby spinal nerves or the spinal cord, causing sciatica (leg pain), loss of bladder and/or bowel control and eventually paralysis of the lower limbs.

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