A spondylolisthesis is a condition of the spine where one vertebra moves forward or backward in relation to another. If the vertebra moves forward it is termed an anterolisthesis and if it moves backwards it is called a retrolisthesis. The amount of slippage is measured from Grade 1-4. Grade 4 is most severe. The movement may cause spinal stenosis, cord or spinal nerve root irritation and inflammation.
A spondylolisthesis can be caused by trauma, a congenital condition, deterioration or pathology. Usually patients with spondylolisthesis can manage the condition with conservative care such as chiropractic, physical therapy and exercise, however, if the slippage becomes too pronounced surgical intervention may be needed.