There are 2 fairly common types of spondylolisthesis in children - dysplastic and isthmic. The dysplastic type is secondary to congenital defects at the lumbosacral joint. The isthmic is usually due to a fatigue fracture of the pars interarticularis but there is also an hereditary element in this type. Most children with spondylolisthesis never develop significant symptoms and even of those who do, the vast majority can be treated without surgery. If symptoms persist or if further olisthesis is occurring, a one-level spinal fusion done through a paraspinal approach is recommended. It is most important not to allow olisthesis to develop to the point that the child shows the cosmetically undesirable stigmata characteristic of the condition. Solid fusion can be obtained in every case and will stop further slip.

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