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Fisioterapia e Pesquisa

Print version ISSN 1809-2950


JASSI, Fabrício José et al. Manual therapy for treating spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis: a literature review. Fisioter. Pesqui. [online]. 2010, vol.17, n.4, pp.366-371. ISSN 1809-2950.

Spondylolysis is a defect in the pars interarticularis of a vertebra with a disruption in the intervertebral segment. Progression of the defect leads to one vertebra slipping over another - which is called spondylolisthesis - which may cause low-back pain. Non-surgical treatment is the initial course of action in most cases of spondylolisthesis. However, few studies have assessed the efficacy of conservative treatment. The purpose of the present study is to review literature on conservative treatment for spondylolysis/listhesis, especially manual therapy, in order to guide practitioners for effective intervention. Results show that both manual therapy and conventional physiotherapy were effective in relieving low-back pain and beneficial for patient's functional outcome. Manual therapy involved spine manipulation, sacroiliac joint manipulation, muscle-energy techniques and stretching affected muscles. Stabilizing lombopelvic exercises, postural muscles strengthening, and hamstring and psoas stretching were also considered important in treating spondylolysis/listhesis. Each case's clinical and radiological features must be individually considered in order to determinate therapeutic strategy. Among non-surgical options, none has proved better than others and all may be included in symptomatic treatment of patients with spondylolysis/listhesis.

Keywords : Musculoskeletal manipulations; Physical therapy modalities; Spondylolysis; Spondylolisthesis [rehabilitation].

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