L5-S1 Disc Bulge, Slip Disc, Stenosis & Spondylolisthesis (2023)

Table Of Contents

  • The Spine is divided into five sections :
  • The Best L5-S1 Treatment Option?
  • Back Pain Caused By L5-S1 Problems
  • Spinal Canal Stenosis A Common Sources Of Back Pain

Chiropractic Specilty Center® (CSC) provides the best holistic non-surgical treatment for an L5-S1 disc bulge, protrusion, prolapse, herniation, and extrusion. CSC’s L5-S1 treatment can fix and repair the root causes of your back and leg pain; contact us today for the best alternative to an L5-S1 surgery.

The L5-S1 spinal segment is located right below the belt line. It is the last segment of the lower back, articulating with the sacrum (tailbone). Published studies show that 80% of adults will experience back pain at least once in their lifetime. The most common causes of back pain are related to the disorders of the last three lumbar segments; L3-L4, L4-L5, and L5-S1. The L4-L5 and L5-S1 are the two most common segments linked to back pain.

In this article, we have discussed common L5-S1 conditions that cause back pain, weakness in legs, or radicular symptoms into buttocks or legs (numbness, tingling, and pain).

The Spine is divided into five sections :

  1. Cervical spine (neck) having a total of seven vertebrae
  2. Thoracic spine (upper and mid-back) which is made up of twelve vertebrae
  3. The Lumbar spine (lower back) composed of five vertebrae
  4. Sacrum, a triangular bone that articulates with the L5, both pelvises, and the coccyx to form the tailbone
  5. Coccyx is a small, triangular shaped structure at the bottom tip of the spine

Back Pain & The L5-S1 Spinal Segment

The lower lumbar spine is prone to injury and wear. Lumbar spine diseases and conditions can cause a host of problems that interferes with daily activities.
Here are some of symptoms and conditions linked to an L5-S1 spinal segment disorder:

  • Back pain, pain in the buttocks, or leg pain
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning sensations in the buttocks, legs, feet, or toes
  • Difficulty while walking or an Inability to stand for short periods
  • Paralysis in one or both legs
  • Bowel and balder disorders
  • Sexual dysfunction including infertility and impotence

The Best L5-S1 Treatment Option?

Spine disorders, including those related to L3-L4, L4-L5, and L5-S1, are best treated conservatively. Invasive procedures such as steroid injections, RFA (radiofrequency ablation) or spine surgery should be the absolute last option. Radiofrequency ablation or RF ablation is a minimally invasive spine surgical procedure designed to kill the pain-sensing nerve in your spine. We discourage patients from getting this treatment as it ’causes degenerative changes in the spine resulting from destabilization due to damaged soft tissues and nerves.

Recovery from back pain related to L3-L4, L4-L5, or L5-S1 requires focused conservative treatments that fix and repair the injured or damaged areas. The best treatment for back pain and pain related to L5-S1 is a combination of physiotherapy with chiropractic.

Chiropractic Specialty Center® provides the most holistic neck and back pain treatment in Malaysia. Our chiropractors and physiotherapists have the skills, knowledge, experience, and advanced therapy devices to help patients recover without surgery or injections. The lower lumbar segments (L3-S1) are common sites of pain and disabilities. Degenerative discs, arthritis (bone spurs), and slip-discs are common sources of back and leg pain.

(Video) Neurological Evaluation Of The Lumbar Nerve Roots - Everything You Need To Know - Dr. Nabil Ebraheim

L5-S1 Spinal Segment Issues That Cause Back Pain & Leg Symptoms

The L5-S1 spinal segment is common problematic spinal segment in back pain patients. Back pain that arises from the L5-S1 segment can be the result of the following conditions:

  • Muscle spasms: In some cases, muscle spasms are the first sign of back pain.
  • Joint issues (spinal joint misalignment, arthritis, or degeneration): Back pain caused by a joint issues is a common occurrence. A neglected spinal joint issues can cause more serious issues such as bones spurs, facet hypertrophy, and slipped discs.
  • Pinched nerves: A pinched nerve results from slipped discs, bone spurs, and ligament thickening as seen in facet hypertrophy and hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum.
  • L5-S1 Spondylolisthesis: L5-S1 Spondylolisthesis is condition in which the 5th lumbar segment (L5) slip forward in relation to the first sacral segment (S1). The L5-S1 segment is the most common site for spondylolisthesis. Spondylolisthesis is most common at L5-S1. An L5-S1 spondylolisthesis can be developmental (due to a fracture or spondylolysis) or congenital.
  • Degenerative changes: Degenerated spinal discs, spinal joints, or soft tissues (degenerated muscles and ligaments are the leading cause of back pain and slipped disc. Your back pain condition could be caused by degeneration of your spinal discs, degeneration of your joints, or soft tissue degeneration
  • Slipped disc: A slipped disc is a layperson’s term for bulging discs, herniated discs, protruded discs, or extruded discs.
  • Sciatica: The sciatic nerve is collection or a bundle of nerves formed from exiting spinal nerves from L4-S3. L5-S1 segment is one of the main nerves involved sciatica or sciatic-like pain syndromes.
  • L5-S1 spondylosis: Spondylosis or arthritic degeneration of vertebral body margins or spinal discs at L5-S1 results excessive weight-bearing activities or from repetitive injuries that go untreated.
  • Posterior Facet Hypertrophy at L5S1: The medical term for spinal joints are facets. Each segment has four facets. Spinal joints are formed through the connection of facets of vertebrae below connects to the facets of vertebra above. Facet hypertrophy is a primary cause of back pain.
  • Spinal Canal Stenosis At L5-S1: The spinal canal is the passage way or tunnel for the spinal cord or spinal nerves when the cord ends. The spinal cord ends at L1 and continues down as nerve fibbers that resembling the hairs on a horse’s tail. Spondylosis, spondylolisthesis, slipped discs, hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum and facet are the leading causes of spinal canal stenosis or shrinkage.
  • Hypertrophy of Ligamentum Flavum at L5-S1: Ligamentum flavum is an essential ligament that connects spine bones and provides the much needed stability during movements, especially bending and extending movements. Thickening of ligamentum flavum can occur at any segment. Thicken or hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum at L5-S1 is not as common as it is in the L3-L4 and L4-L5 segments.
  • L5-S1 Foraminal Stenosis: The openings along the sides through which verves exit the spine. Shrinkage in size of this foramina (hole) cause nerve impingement. Vertebral foraminal stenosis or foraminal stenosis is common in slipped disc, spondylolisthesis, facet hypertrophy and hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum.

To recovery from an L5-S1, you need expert care to assess and find repair the root cause of your condition. Following are the steps to take to optimize your back pain treatment.

Back Pain Caused By L5-S1 Problems

The L4-L5 and L5-S1 segments are the two most common segments implicated in back pain. Axial loading (weight bearing activities) is main causative factor relating to issues that arise from L5-S1. Individuals who sit or stand for extended periods place enormous stress on the spinal joint and disc of L5-S1 segments. The harmful impact of prolonged or excessive weightbearing activities increases joint and disc pressure (increased intradiscal pressure).

Intradiscal pressure is measured in mm Hg (millimetres of mercury). A healthy intradiscal pressure is below 70 mm Hg. Intradiscal pressures of over 90 mm Hg lead to a decrease in blood flow. Moreover, Increased intradiscal pressure expels nutrients and compounds needed for the maintenance of a healthy spinal disc.

Spinal disc pressure (intradiscal pressure) is directly related to body position and daily activities. Examples of average intradiscal pressure in various positions are as follow:

  • Supine position: Average intradiscal pressure is 25 mm Hg
  • Standing upright: Intradiscal pressure increases to 100+ mm Hg
  • Bending at the waist while standing: Intradiscal pressure rises to 150+ mm Hg
  • In the upright proper sitting position: Average intradiscal pressure is 200 mm Hg
  • Sitting in poor postures: Intradiscal pressure can increase to 250+ mm Hg

The lumbar spine (lower back) is most the most susceptible spinal segment to the harmful impact of increased intradiscal pressures associated with prolonged sitting or standing.

L5-S1 Disc Bulge And Disc Herniation Causes, Signs & Symptoms

The lumbar spine or the lower back is the most common location for disc bulge and disc herniation (slipped disc). The most common site for a slipped disc in the lower back is L4-L5. The second most common site of involvement is L5-S1. L3-L4 is the third most common site for a herniated lumbar discs.

Premature wear and tear of spinal discs as seen in degenerative disc disease is the leading cause of a herniated discs at L5-S1. Spinal disc-related conditions are all linked to disc degeneration; for the L5-S1 disc to be herniated, it must have pre-existing degenerative changes. Healthy discs will not herniate at all. Individuals with damaged or degenerated discs are at greater risk of developing a herniated L5-S1 disc. Common causes of spinal disc herniations include:

  • Prolong sitting
  • Sitting in a forward bending posture
  • Excessive bending or twisting at the back
  • Improper lifting
  • Slip and falls
  • Injures

A herniated L5-S1 disc can press and impinge nerves and the spinal cord. This compression can lead to discomfort, aches and pains in the back, buttocks, hips, thighs, leg feet, or toes. It may also cause numbness, tingling and weakness in thighs, legs, knees, ankles, feet, or toes.

(Video) Best Exercise for Sciatica from Bulging Disc In Addition to Spinal Stenosis or Spondylolisthesis

Symptoms of an L5-S1 pinched nerve include pain, stiffness, numbness, tingling and weakness. Nerve pain is described as having burning, sharp, or throbbing like-symptoms which travel to the lower limbs giving patients a sciatica-like pain.

Sciatica pain is the result of one or more nerves in the cervical spine being compressed or irritated. The sharp pain can be felt as a shooting or burning sensation originating in the lower back and moving up the leg, affecting the distribution of certain nerves in the feet. Sciatica pain can run down the buttocks, but its distribution depends on which nerves are affected.

L5-S1 Spinal Segment Issues That Cause Back Pain & Leg Symptoms

Leg painoften occurs with spine problems involving the intervertebral disc in the lower back. However, patients with severe neck, upper back, and mid-back issues that compress the spinal cord may also experience pain and weakness in their legs. Therefore, expert care and analysis are essential in identifying the actual cause of leg pain. CSC’s chiropractors are the experts you need to trace back the cause of leg pain and customize a holistic treatment plan that fixes and repairs leg pain causes without surgery or injections.

When a slipped disc (disc bulge or herniated disc) presses on the nerve, pain, numbness, or weakness may occur in the body area where the nerve travels. Pain felt in the buttocks or legs may have resulted from compressed nerves or an L4-L5 or L5-S1 impingement of spinal nerves or compression of the thecal sac.

A herniated or bulging disc can occur at any segment that has a spinal disc. Bulging and herniated discs or slipped discs are common in the neck and lower back. Slipped discs in the neck may involve the C4-C5, C5-C6, or C6-C7 segment. Slipped discs in the lower back are most common at the L3-L4, L4-L5, or L5-S1.

Common back pain symptoms caused by herniated discs or slipped discs include sciatica-like sensations (pain and numbness in the buttock, thigh, leg, foot, or toes). It will also cause pain and numbness in the genital area, difficulty urinating, and weakness in the legs in severe cases.

Sciatica & The L5-S1 Spinal Segment

Sciatica is a general term used to describe pain in the back, hips, and legs caused by compression of the sciatic nerve from the lower end of the spinal cord to the lower extremities.

Sciatica pain results when nerve fibres from the sciatica nerve are compressed in the spinal cord, thecal sac, or when exiting the spine. Sciatica can also result from congenital anomalies or excessive muscle tightness of the piriformis muscle – a deep muscle in the buttocks.

Spinal Canal Stenosis A Common Sources Of Back Pain

The spinal canal is the tunnel created by the interlocking spinal segments to house the spinal cord. The spinal cord is a rope-like cylinder-shaped bundle of nerves originating at the skull’s base and continuing downward inside the spinal canal until the L1 or the first lumbar segment. At the L1-L2 spinal level, the spinal cord changes from a solid rope-like cylinder to strands of hair similar to a horse’s tail (solid part and strands hair). The cord is named cauda equina (from Latin horse’s tail) at the point where the rope-like structures change into hair-like strands or rootlets.

(Video) L4 L5 - L5 S1 disc bulge best exercise rehabilitation for pain relief

Cauda Equina Syndrome & Back Pain

Cauda equina syndrome occurs with compression and impingement of the nerves in the thecal sac (nerves in the spinal canal) in the lower spine. The three most common causes of cauda equine are slipped disc, arthritis, and hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum, which compress spinal cord, thecal sac, or nerve roots as they exit the spinal canal. Most patients with cauda equina syndrome will have a combination of one or all of the three causes motioned above.

Cauda equina syndrome is associated with debilitating pain in the low back and lower extremities. It causes difficulty walking in the legs, paraesthesia, weakness and, in severe cases, intestinal and bladder disorders.

Typical symptoms of a cauda equina syndrome include debilitating pain in the back and lower extremities, difficulty walking in the legs, paraesthesia, and weakness in the legs. Other common symptoms of cauda equina include sexual and reproductive disfunctions, bowel or intestinal issues, and bladder disorders.

The L4-L5 and L5-S1 spinal segments are the most common causes of cauda equina syndrome. Conditions such as slipped discs, thickening of the posterior vertebral bodies (spondylosis, arthritis, and bone spurs), and hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum are leading causes.

Slipped Disc (Bulging & Herniated Disc)

Slipped disc, also known as herniated disc, disc bulge, protruded disc, extruded disc, or prolapsed disc results when nucleus push against the thecal sac, spinal cord, or spinal nerves. In a herniated disc, the gel-like center of the intervertebral disc bulges, slips, or tears in weak areas of the intervertebral discs, compressing the nerves.

Most people who suffer from an L5-S1 slipped disc will experience back pain. But in some cases, there may not be any back pain; an example of a common L5-S1 condition that presents without back pain is sciatica or sciatica-like symptoms.

Contact Chiropractic Specialty Center® in Kuala Lumpur for the best non-surgical treatment of a slipped disc at L5-S1 today!

Best Treatment For Back Pain & L5-S1 Spinal Disorder

Holistic methods of focused chiropractic and physiotherapy combined is the best means of fixing and repairing issues that cause back pain including severe slipped discs, and canal stenosis. Compressive treatments that combines the best of chiropractic and physiotherapy eliminate the need to have surgery or injections.

Chiropractic Specialty Center® has treated and healed thousands of back pain patients. The vast majority of our back pain patients had L3-L4, L4-L5, or L5-S1 disorders. Our clinical teams of chiropractors and physiotherapists use advanced and breakthrough methods of spine care that fix and repairs damaged spinal tissues without injections or surgery. Our methodology and specialized spine technology can help even if you suffer from severe conditions impacting your L3-l4, l4-L5, or L5-S1.

(Video) Herniated Disc VS Lumbar Stenosis

NSD Therapy® is our method of choice for L5-S1 slipped disc, canal stenosis, facet hypertrophy, or hypertrophy of ligamentum flavum. NSD Therapy® is an integrative method of non-invasive therapies and treatment that incorporates chiropractic, physiotherapy, and rehabilitation through manual and therapy machines for lasting relieve. Chiropractic Specialty Center® is the only center that provides NSD Therapy® in Malaysia. Call our main center in Bukit Damansara at 03 2093 100 (alternatively WhatsApp us at 017-269-1873) or contact a center near you for more information about our L3-L4, L4-L5, and L5-S1 treatment for back pain or slipped disc today.


Is slip disc and spondylolisthesis same? ›

Spondylolisthesis is not the same as a slipped disc. This is when the tissue between the bones in your spine pushes out.

How serious is a L5-S1 disc herniation? ›

A herniated disc at lumbar segment 5 and sacral segment 1 (L5-S1) usually causes S1 nerve impingement. In addition to sciatica, this type of herniated disc can lead to weakness when standing on the toes. Numbness and pain can radiate down into the sole of the foot and the outside of the foot.

What is L5-S1 spondylolisthesis? ›

Spondylolisthesis. If the pars of L5 fractures on both sides, the vertebra may slip over S1, a condition called spondylolisthesis. Most commonly, spondylolisthesis of L5 is caused by repetitive stress to the pars interarticularis and is most has commonly seen in children and adolescents.

Can L5 S1 cause paralysis? ›

A syndrome in L5-S1 disc herniation with sexual and sphincter dysfunction without pain and muscle weakness was noted. We think that it is crucial for neurosurgeons to early realise that paralysis of the sphincter and sexual dysfunction are possible in patients with lumbar L5-S1 disc disease.

What are the final stages of spinal stenosis? ›

Spinal stenosis, often an end stage of the spine degenerative process, is characterized by leg pain with walking. Pain will go away with rest but you may have to specifically sit down to ease the leg pain.

Is spondylolisthesis serious? ›

Spondylolisthesis is a common cause of back pain, but it is not dangerous and doesn't need to take over your life. Many treatments are available, from medication and physical therapy to spinal surgery.

Is spondylolisthesis a permanent disability? ›

Conclusions: The finding that the incidence corresponds well with the incidence in the normal population may suggest that lumbar isthmic spondylolisthesis does not invariably lead to severe impairment or disability, although location of the defect at the level proximal to L5 may be connected to an increased risk for ...

Can you become paralyzed from spondylolisthesis? ›

If a nerve is compressed, over time, spondylolisthesis can cause nerve damage, which may lead to paralysis. In some cases, spondylolisthesis can cause cauda equina syndrome — another spinal condition that is a medical emergency because if it is left untreated there is a high risk of paralysis.

Can you live with spondylolisthesis without surgery? ›

Most patients will not need any surgical treatment as long as their spondylolisthesis is stable, meaning the vertebra is not slipping forward any more. Your spine specialist most likely will want to monitor your spondylolisthesis at regular intervals. Nonsurgical treatments include: Two to three days of bed rest.

What can make spondylolisthesis worse? ›

In general, spondylolisthesis will get worse if people continue to participate in activities that stress the spine without seeking medical care. Poor posture, participation in sports such as diving and gymnasics, and involvement in a motor vehicle accident can all make spondylolisthesis worse.

Can L5 S1 cause hip pain? ›

For example, compression of the nerve roots that exit between the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebrae (L4-5) or the 5th lumbar vertebra and the sacrum (L5-S1), could, for some people, result in painful sensations across the buttock, down the back of the thigh and right down into the foot (see picture).

What is the best treatment for spondylolisthesis? ›

The most common types of surgery used to correct spondylolisthesis are: laminectomy (removing the part of the bone causing pressure); and/or spinal fusion (fusing the vertebrae together to stabilize the affected area). In some cases, both procedures may be done together.

Is spondylolisthesis the same as stenosis? ›

Lumbar degenerative spondylolisthesis (DS) and spinal stenosis (SPS) were originally described as separate pathoanatomic entities, though both cause narrowing of the spinal canal, compression of the nerve roots, and can lead to neurogenic claudication.

Is spondylolisthesis lifelong? ›

Spondylolisthesis is a very common cause of back pain in the United States, affecting approximately 3 million Americans every single year. The spinal condition is chronic, meaning it can last for years or be lifelong, but is typically treatable by a neurosurgeon.

What should you not do if you have spondylolisthesis? ›

Most patients with spondylolisthesis should avoid activities that might cause more stress to the lumbar spine, such as heavy lifting and sports activities like gymnastics, football, competitive swimming, and diving.

When should you have surgery for spondylolisthesis? ›

Surgery may be considered sooner if the patient's spondylolisthesis is getting worse (i.e. the slip is progressing). Surgery may be recommended sooner if the patient experiences pain that is so severe that it inhibits his or her ability to sleep, walk, and/or function in daily activities.

Does spondylolisthesis cause spinal stenosis? ›

Degenerative spondylolisthesis is a common cause of spinal stenosis and neurogenic claudication in adults.

How did I get spondylolisthesis? ›

It is often due to a birth defect in that area of the spine or sudden injury (acute trauma). In adults, the most common cause is abnormal wear on the cartilage and bones, such as arthritis. The condition mostly affects people over 50 years old.

Does spondylolisthesis get worse with age? ›

Life is a degenerative process. It is normal for joints to become arthritic or discs to degenerate as we use our back. If you are diagnosed with spondylolisthesis, especially at a young age, this does tend to worsen over time.

Does spondylolisthesis cause hip pain? ›

The vertebra may slip out of place on the vertebra positioned below placing pressure on nerves that may cause leg pain or lower back pain. Because spinal stenosis with spondylolisthesis can cause significant hip or knee pain, the presence of degenerative arthritis at these joints must be considered.

What are the stages of spondylolisthesis? ›

Grade I spondylolisthesis is 1 to 25% slippage, grade II is up to 50% slippage, grade III is up to 75% slippage, and grade IV is 76-100% slippage. If there is more than 100% slippage, it is known as spondyloptosis or grade V spondylolisthesis.

How do you sit with spondylolisthesis? ›

So, how should one sit with spondylolisthesis? The best way to sit with spondylolisthesis is with a neutral spine where the lower back is fully supported by the backrest of the chair. Minimize any awkward postures such as bending, twisting or slouching. Uncross your legs and keep your hips level.

How should I sleep with spondylolisthesis? ›

Many people who suffer from back pain caused by isthmic spondylolisthesis feel better when sleeping in a reclining position. To test this out, you can try sleeping for a few nights in a reclining chair, or by propping yourself up with pillows in bed.

What happens if spondylolisthesis goes untreated? ›

Medical intervention is crucial for relieving symptoms of spondylolisthesis. This condition can cause chronic pain and permanent damage if left untreated. You may eventually experience weakness and leg paralysis if nerves have been damaged. Infection of the spine may also occur in rare cases.

What foods to avoid if you have spondylolisthesis? ›

There are many foods that you will need to avoid.
  • Sugary Foods. Sugary foods are among the worst foods that you can eat. ...
  • Vegetable Oil. Most vegetables are high in omega 6 fatty acids. ...
  • Refined Grains. It is best to eat whole grains instead of refined grains. ...
  • Dairy Products. ...
  • Processed Corn. ...
  • Red Meat. ...
  • Foods With Chemicals.

Can spondylolisthesis cause bowel problems? ›

Complications of spondylolisthesis include chronic pain in the lower back or legs, as well as numbness, tingling or weakness in the legs. Severe compression of the nerve can cause problems with bowel or bladder control, but this is very uncommon.

Should I be worried about spondylolisthesis? ›

Generally, spondylolisthesis causes pain in your legs when you walk or stand for long period of time. If you have been diagnosed, there's no need to panic. Spondylolisthesis can certainly be an annoyance—sometimes a major one—but it is not dangerous.

What does spondylolisthesis pain feel like? ›

Patients with degenerative spondylolisthesis will often develop leg and/or lower back pain when slippage of the vertebrae begins to put pressure on the spinal nerves. The most common symptoms in the legs include a feeling of diffuse weakness associated with prolonged standing or walking.

Does spondylolisthesis show on MRI? ›

Spondylolisthesis is confirmed by visualization on MRI. Spondylolysis may be difficult to appreciate, and plain radiographs and/or CT scans may be complementary in this regard.

When is L5 S1 surgery necessary? ›

The most common indications for L5 S1 fusion include: Low back disc degeneration Slipped disc (spondylolisthesis) Spinal Bone Fracture Recurrent Disc Herniation Pain radiating down leg (Sciatica ) Curvature (Scoliosis) Narrowing of the Canal (Stenosis) Failed Spine Surgery with Instability.

Can L5 S1 cause bowel problems? ›

Rule out spine issues

Nonetheless, another study noted that L5/S1 herniation can lead to "bowel dysfunction."

What is the best painkiller for spinal stenosis? ›

Pain medications such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), naproxen (Aleve, others) and acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) may be used temporarily to ease the discomfort of spinal stenosis. They are typically recommended for a short time only, as there's little evidence of benefit from long-term use.

Do epidural injections help spondylolisthesis? ›

The most common injection used for spondylolisthesis is an epidural steroid injection (ESI). An ESI targets the epidural space, which is the space surrounding the membrane that covers the spine and nerve roots.

How do you stop spondylolisthesis from progressing? ›

Nonsurgical treatment can usually prevent the condition from progressing and relieve symptoms.
  1. Activity Modification and Bracing. ...
  2. Physical Therapy. ...
  3. Pain Relief Medication. ...
  4. Corticosteroid Injection.

Is spinal fusion necessary for spondylolisthesis? ›

Neurosurgeons usually recommend nonsurgical spondylolisthesis treatment at first, but if those options fail, you may need spinal fusion surgery. Spondylolisthesis does not always cause noticeable symptoms. However, if you do notice symptoms they will most likely present themselves as: Lower back pain.

Is stenosis worse than spondylosis? ›

Unlike spondylosis, spinal stenosis might require surgical treatment in severe cases, and might worsen if not diagnosed and treated in time.

Is spinal stenosis a serious condition? ›

Spinal stenosis is caused by gradual narrowing of the spinal canal, resulting in painful pressure and compression on the spinal cord and nerves. While spinal stenosis is not a serious condition in the initial stages, it can lead to serious and permanent damage if it becomes advanced or remains untreated.

Can Lumbar Spinal Stenosis cripple you? ›

Disability: In severe cases of spinal stenosis, a patient can end up permanently disabled. This may be through paralysis, or weakness so severe that it is impossible to stand and move as normal. It is not unreasonable to expect severe stenosis to lead to a person being bound to a wheelchair.

What grade is 9 mm spondylolisthesis? ›

The spondylolysis was unilateral in 8 cases and bilateral in 133 cases. Spondylolisthesis was diagnosed in 120 patients. The mean range of the slip in the midline sagittal image was 9 mm, with a range of 3–17 mm of slip (Meyerding Grade I–IV).

What is a Grade 2 spondylolisthesis? ›

Spondylolisthesis is further classified into grades, according to how far out of place the vertebra is. The grades are: Grade 1: 25 percent of the vertebral body has slipped forward. This is the lowest grade. Grade 2: Between 25-50 percent of the vertebral body has slipped forward.

Does spondylolisthesis cause arthritis? ›

When degenerative spondylolisthesis does occur in the neck, it is usually a secondary issue to arthritis in the facet joints. This article reviews the underlying causes, diagnosis, symptoms, and full range of surgical and non-surgical treatment options for degenerative spondylolisthesis.

Is a disc bulge serious? ›

A bulging disk can push against the spinal cord and nerve roots, leading to severe pain and problems with mobility. Treatment may include a combination of medication, physical therapy, and self-care. In severe cases, a person may need surgery.

How do you get rid of L5-S1 pain? ›

Treatment of L5-S1 usually begins with: Medication. Over-the-counter (OTC) medications, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are usually tried first for pain stemming from L5-S1. For more severe pain, prescription medication, such as opioids, tramadol, and/or corticosteroids may be used.

Can a bulging disc heal itself? ›

A herniated disk is also known as a slipped, ruptured or bulging disk. It's one of the most common causes of neck, back and leg pain. Most of the time, herniated disks heal on their own or with simple home-care measures.

Do steroid injections help bulging discs? ›

Corticosteroid injections can reduce inflammation and can be effective when delivered directly into the painful area. Unfortunately, the injection does not make a herniated disc smaller; it only works on the spinal nerves by flushing away the proteins that cause swelling.

What happens if a bulging disc goes untreated? ›

If a bulging disc is untreated, the symptoms will become worse as the constant pressure on the nerve intensifies the sensations. This can also cause issues with walking, and even while holding objects, as the pressure impedes the ability of the nerves to transmit information properly.

How long does l5 s1 pain last? ›

Generally, the pain resolves in 4-6 weeks' time. You should restrict your activities that are causing aggravation of pain, pain medications, ice/heat therapy, physical rehabilitation will help in your recovery.

What causes L5 S1 disc bulge? ›

Premature wear and tear of spinal discs as seen in degenerative disc disease is the leading cause of a herniated discs at L5-S1. Spinal disc-related conditions are all linked to disc degeneration; for the L5-S1 disc to be herniated, it must have pre-existing degenerative changes. Healthy discs will not herniate at all.

How severe is a bulging disc? ›

Most commonly, bulging discs create pressure points on nearby nerves which create a variety of sensations. Evidence of a bulging disc may range from mild tingling and numbness to moderate or severe pain, depending on the severity. In most cases, when a bulging disc has reached this stage it is near or at herniation.

Do you need surgery for a bulging disc? ›

When bulging discs are compressed so tightly that your normal functions are affected, then surgery may be your best bet for relieving the pain and removing its source. Ideally, you'll see a number of spine specialists on campus at the Southeastern Spine Institute before resorting to surgery.

Can you live with spondylolisthesis without surgery? ›

Most patients will not need any surgical treatment as long as their spondylolisthesis is stable, meaning the vertebra is not slipping forward any more. Your spine specialist most likely will want to monitor your spondylolisthesis at regular intervals. Nonsurgical treatments include: Two to three days of bed rest.

When is L5 S1 surgery necessary? ›

The most common indications for L5 S1 fusion include: Low back disc degeneration Slipped disc (spondylolisthesis) Spinal Bone Fracture Recurrent Disc Herniation Pain radiating down leg (Sciatica ) Curvature (Scoliosis) Narrowing of the Canal (Stenosis) Failed Spine Surgery with Instability.

Can L5 S1 surgery success rate? ›

There was an overall 80% fusion rate for all patients who underwent anterior lumbar fusion at L5-S1. Average age was 34 years, with average length of disability from low-back pain of 11 months.

Can slip disc be cured? ›

Most people recover from a slipped disc within six weeks without treatment. Until then there are a number of treatment options that aim to help relieve the pain and improve mobility.

What makes a slipped disc worse? ›

The pain from a herniated disc usually is worse when you are active and gets better when you are resting. Coughing, sneezing, sitting, driving, and bending forward may make the pain worse. The pain gets worse when you make these movements because there is more pressure on the nerve.

Can a bulging disc heal after 2 years? ›

After 2 years: 76 people out of 100 who had surgery had no symptoms or almost no symptoms. This means that 24 still had some symptoms. 69 people out of 100 who had non-surgical treatment had no symptoms or almost no symptoms.


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