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Spondylolisthesis | Long Term Disability Claim Tips

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Spondylolisthesis is a condition of the spinal column where one of the vertebrae bones slips out its ordinary position onto the vertebra below.  If it has slipped a significant degree or impinges on a nerve, significant pain and discomfort can occur. This pain can greatly affect your ability to bend, stoop or lift and consequently diminish your ability to work. If you are experiencing back pain, numbness or other problems in your lower back, you should consult with the New York long term disability attorneys at Riemer & Associates. They can help direct you to a physician that specializes in back pain and can run diagnostic tests to determine the degree of your disk slippage.

Symptoms and Types of Spondylolisthesis

In most cases, there are no obvious symptoms of the condition other than generalized lower back (lumbar) pain. Some people will experience muscle spasms in the back of their thighs or may have tingling or numbness in one or both feet. This is usually because the slipped vertebra is putting pressure on a nerve.

The following types of spondylolisthesis can happen in conjunction with or as a result of other medical problems.

  • Degenerative spondylolisthesis: the most common form of vertebral slippage is associated with the aging process and degeneration of the disks between vertebrae. If the disks are weak or compromised, it is easier for the vertebrae that they support to slip.
  • Pathological spondylolisthesis: where the vertebrae have been weakened because of another disease, such as osteoporosis, or osteomyelitis slippage may happen.
  • Traumatic spondyloslisthesis: where the vertebral slippage occurs because of a traumatic injury such as a fracture or compression fracture.
  • Congential spondylolisthesis: a condition where abnormal formation of the spine at birth predisposes a person to vertebral slippage later in life.
  • Isthmic spondylolisthesis: the result of small stress fractures in vertebrae that cause bone degeneration and eventual slippage. This form of the disease results from uncorrected spondylolysis.

In addition to diagnosing the particular type or cause of the spondylolisthesis, your doctor will also apply a "grade" to the amount of slippage that has occurred.  Generally when there is more than 50% slippage, surgery will become a viable treatment option, especially if the slippage is causing persistent pain. This is also the point at which many people begin to consider hiring our New York long term disability attorneys to assist with filing for disability benefits.

Treatment for Spondylolisthesis

The first step is taking X-rays to determine what is causing your discomfort. In cases where nerve impingement or severe slippage has occurred, your doctor may order a CT scan or an MRI to get a more detailed view of the problem.  Any spondylolisthesis treatment your doctor prescribes will be based on the type and severity of the slippage you are experiencing.  Once you have a diagnosis and treatment plan your New York long term disability attorneys can begin building your case.

The spine is an incredibly important structural component of the body and doctors will not try surgery until more conservative measures have failed or the extent of the slippage poses an imminent danger. Conservative treatment usually involves physical therapy to strengthen the back, oral pain relievers and possibly epidural steroid injections if anti-inflammatory pain relievers don't work.

Contact our New York Long Term Disability Attorneys

If these measures fail to correct the problem, you should consult our New York long term disability attorneys.  More invasive procedures will probably be necessary and your ability to work will be impacted if you need decompression surgery or spinal fusion surgery.  In addition to the invasiveness of the surgery, you will also face a long recovery period and you may not be able to earn an income.

Don’t risk the success of your disability claim by going it alone. If you have been having regular lower back pain or were diagnosed with spondylolisthesis, call the long term disability lawyers at Riemer & Associates.  They can be reached at (212) 297-0070 for a consultation of your case.

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