The authors see a large number of back problems, many with complicating features, and are involved in an ongoing assessment of the effectiveness of various treatment modalities, particularly spinal manipulation. This paper deals with spondylolisthesis. Included is a discussion of the definition, classification, etiology and epidemiology of spondylolisthesis. Pain mechanisms are discussed along with the role of conservative and surgical management. Results are presented in a series of cases managed by manipulative methods. The authors conclude that spinal manipulation is of great value in selected cases of back pain in which there is radiographic evidence of spondylolisthesis.
No claim is made that such treatment is influencing the spondylolisthesis itself, but that in most cases the spondylolisthesis is an incidental finding, and no contraindication to manipulative therapy.
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