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pars defect in lumbar spine

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,000
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:25 AM in Spinal Stenosis
:H Hi, I've just seen my neurosurgeon with a diagnosis of a pars defect and spinal stenosis in the lumbar spine L4.L5 and S1, she has prescribed Nurontin and a bivalve brace. Has anyone had any experience with this treatment? Has it helped, or has anyone had the spinal fusion? I'd be greatful for anyone's experience or knowledge about this condition.


  • Hi N2, welcome to SH. This is a great site full of information and support. I had bilateral pars defects of L4 causing spondylolisthesis of L4 on L5. I did conservative treatment for 2 years but never a brace. I have heard of someone being given a brace for pars defects/spondy in teenagers with sudden onset pars fractures, usually after a sports injury. This can immobilize the spine while the pars heals. I don't know if your situation is anything like that. Is the brace for stabilization, pain relief, does the doctor think it may heal, or ? Do you have a spondy also? I am 41, was 39 when I was diagnosed, but had back problems since age 17 when I jumped off a counter. I believe that is probably when I fractured the pars. Then it just took time, added weight and 20 years of being an RN to make the pars defects result in the spondy, giving me back pain and radiculopathy.

    I had a fusion in August of L4/5. I am doing pretty good. Will return to work next Friday. For lots of fusion stories look at the surgery thread.

    Good-luck to you, let us know how it goes with your treatment. >:D< Cali-Sue
  • Hi Cali-Sue, thanks for sharing with me. I had a cervical corepectomy of the C5,C6,C7 in 2000, the Neuro Surgeon said I have the bones of an infant in my spine (tiny) I have DDD but the bones are degenerating. When I had my cervical procedure she said I had some thorasic involvement but couldn't do all that at one time. A few months ago my right leg started aching and I thought it was from walking in a circular pool all summer to lose weight, then this diagnosis and an MRI confirmed Pars defect I don't believe the surgeon thinks it will get better, I think she wants me in the brace till the pain is unbearable. To me this takes a big chance that I will lose more feeling or damage the nerves that scares me. It seems to me surgery could correct this (maybe) and I can lead a normal life. The guy doing the brace said if the brace relieves the pain that would be a good indicator that surgery will be successful.
    I am very depressed so I hope I will be able to at least exercise with the brace (walk, treadmill) to lose some weight and then maybe surgery will be an option. I have to do some research on Spondy, I'm not sure if I have that.
    Thanks so much for your info.
    Write soon if you like.
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  • I'm not sure I know what you had done as I am new to all this, are you glad you did the surgery? How are you now?
  • I also have pars along with disc degeneration and both spondlyolesthesis and spondlyosis. I had an accident on Valentine's Day and havent been the same since. I am in excrutiating pain and have no idea which way to turn next.
    Does anyone have any advice they can share with me?
  • Over a year in the pain you speak!!! I am done. I have had 6 epidural/facet injections and 1 Rhazotomy. Tons of PT in and out of the pool! The pool therapy is the best! But, no real relief. After research and talking to Ortho and Nuero surgeons a fusion is the best fix. Your choice is what kind. I am going for the new one. Trans 1 or also called Axial LIF. Recovery much less!!!! Only few docs do this. You can go on the company web site and they will send you info. It was very helpful! I am so ready!

    All choices come in your time. I wish you time!
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  • Hi Back Tyme,
    We seem to have the exact same problem. I've noticed that the Drs. advocate surgery for the younger folks but I am 57 and they don't seem to anxious to do the operations. I recieved my Bivalve brace last Friday and it's now Wednesday x-mas eve day and I can see right now this cannot be a forever option for me. When are you going to have your procedure? I wish you luck with it and please let me know how you are. I'll be sending prayers your way.
    God BLess
    E :H O:)
  • I don't know if my case is a help or not but i was born with pars defect in L4, L5, and L6 but i also have an extra vertebre which is L7 and doctors cant explain how or why i am able to walk but they think that it is because my L7 stabilizes my spine. Doctors can't explain how, why or how long i will be able to walk but right now i am 34 and still walking. My vertebre move slightly when i over exert my self and i can feel that they have moved the next day because i have a high tollerance to pain i don't feel this right away. This happens rarely like once or twice in a 5yr period, or if i fall the wrong way then it takes me a couple of weeks to recooperate then i'm ok again but during that period i need pain pills and to watch how i move during this period and my spine moves back into place by itself. Doctors tell me that this is herittary and about 5yrs ago my mother found out that she has it. Then we realized that my grandfather had it had a accident at work and then they fused his back and he lived in pain for the duration of his life.
  • I had an x-ray done awhile ago and in it, it revealed I had Pars Defect but instead of my Dr actually doing anything to fix the problem I was prescribed pain pills for about 4 yrs. I now have a new DR and he wants to me go see a Neurologist and says I will probably have to have surgery which really scares me because I have a 4 yr old who is constantly on the go. When you have surgery how long are you laid up for and what all is done?
  • I have been having the worst back pain ever, done a couple MRIs, they found DDD, and a couple other minor things, but were saying that the pain I was having just didn't add up to just the DDD, so I went to a Neurosurgeon and he said the same thing then sent me down the hall yesterday ( 03-01-11 ) to have xrays with me bending over slightly and then with me arching back slightly, the same day I was called and said I have PARS, now they are talking surgery. I would do anything to get out of this daily pain. It is every single day, constant! I have a 4 yr old and a 5 yr old, how long will I be down? I just don't know what I'm going to do. I have a husband who will help with everything as much as he can but he works a full time job. After his vacation time is used up I don't know what I will do. SO I was wondering how long I will be down. Anyone have any advice r been through this that can help me out?
    Thanks so much
  • I'm going through the exact same thing, I have a 4 yr old & a 5 yr old. :(
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