the backward slippage of one vertebra onto the vertebra immediately below.
Retrolisthesis is reverse spondylolisthesis brought on by the effects of disc degeneration and usually occurs at the L3-4, L4-5, or L4-5 levels.
Retrolisthesis may cause no pain, slight back pain or pain that extends into the buttock and thigh.
Retrolisthesis can narrow the size of the spinal canal to allow spinal nerve irritation.
The stress on the intervertebral disc as the backward movement of the vertebra occurs creates much stress on the disc which then causes back pain. (See the white arrow for retrolisthesis.)
A thorough, clinical examination that may include imaging is important to your recovery.
Lumbar Spine Exam Description
In office, Pro Active uses Cox Technic Flexion Distraction and Decompression to widen the canal space, drop the intradiscal pressure and increase the disc height to relieve pain.
You will welcome the Cox Technic manipulation that gently "pulls you apart," as many patients describe the treatment or say they need. Depending on the severity of your pain and symptoms, gentler Protocol I may be applied until 50% relief of pain or more restoring Protocol II may be applied to guide your recovery.
Graphic Animation of Cox Technic - Lumbar Spine
The disc is pressing on the nerve. Note that as the disc herniation reduces, the pinched nerve is relieved.
Cox Technic Protocol I - for severe pain and pain that extends below the knee
Cox Technic Protocol II - for pain that is in the low back and leg but does not extend below the knee
Like spondylolisthesis, the gentler the flexion-distraction treatment, the better the response.
In office adjunctive care may hasten your recovery.
At Home Care
At home you may want to avoid sitting for long periods of time, wear a support brace if recommended, take nutritional supplements that help rebuild disc cartilage, do exercises that strengthen your spine, sleep on a supportive mattress, sit in an ergonomically designed chair, and modify your daily activities as needed.
Contact Watertown Wellness Center for care of your retrolisthesis.