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Chiropractic Research Review

Retrolisthesis: Overview, Diagnosis and Treatment

Retrolisthesis is a common clinical entity which is rarely seen added to any diagnosis. A case study of a 70-year-old man suffering from low-back and bilateral-leg pain and an observed L5 retrolisthesis illustrates treatment and outcome procedures.

Radiographic studies revealed severe discogenic spondylosis and multiple biomechanical alterations, including a retrolisthesis of 9 mm at L5.

Multi-segmental spinal stenosis between L5-L4 and L5-S1 was likely.
Treatment consisted of prone bilateral pelvic manipulations (with thrusts directed anteriorly through the ischial tuberosities) and standing lumbar extension exercises. The patient was also advised to use ice for 20-minute periods every two hours. Treatment was provided three times per week for three weeks.

Included is a complete examination of the epidemiology of retrolisthesis and its relationship with spondylolisthesis. This case report indicates that chiropractic care can offer favorable outcomes for patients suffering from low-back and bilateral-leg pain from an L5 retrolisthesis.

Bedner ER. Chiropractic treatment of low-back and bilateral-leg pain caused by L5 retrolisthesis: a case study. Journal of Sports Chiropractic and Rehabilitation, Dec. 1997;11(4), pp151-5.

Chiropractic Research Review

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