Geometry of the vertebral bodies and the intervertebral discs in lumbar segments adjacent to spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis: Pilot study

Ella Been, Ling Li, David J. Hunter, Leonid Kalichman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations

Abstract

The objective is to evaluate the geometric parameters of vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs in spinal segments adjacent to spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis. This pilot cross-sectional study was an ancillary project to the Framingham Heart Study. The presence of spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis as well as measurements of spinal geometry were identified on CT imaging of 188 individuals. Spinal geometry measurements included lordosis angle, wedging of each lumbar vertebra and intervertebral disc. Last measurements were used to calculate ΣB, the sum of the lumbar L1-L5 body wedge angles; and ΣD, the sum of the lumbar L1-L5 intervertebral disc angles. Using Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney test we compared the geometric parameters between individuals with no pathology and ones with spondylolysis (with no listhesis) at L5 vertebra, ones with isthmic spondylolisthesis at L5-S1 level, and ones with degenerative spondylolisthesis at L5-S1 level. Spinal geometry in individuals with spondylolysis or listhesis at L5 shows three major patterns: In spondylolysis without listhesis, spinal morphology is similar to that of healthy individuals; In isthmic spondylolisthesis there is high lordosis angle, high L5 vertebral body wedging and very high L4-5 disc wedging; In degenerative spondylolisthesis, spinal morphology shows more lordotic wedging of the L5 vertebral body, and less lordotic wedging of intervertebral discs. In conclusion, there are unique geometrical features of the vertebrae and discs in spondylolysis or listhesis. These findings need to be reproduced in larger scale study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1159-1165
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Spine Journal
Volume20
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2011

Keywords

  • Degenerative spondylolisthesis
  • Intervertebral disc
  • Isthmic spondylolisthesis
  • Spine
  • Spondylolysis
  • Vertebral body

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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