Spondylolisthesis incontinence is a symptom of dramatic neurological compression in most patients. Incontinence can affect bladder or bowels, adding a new and terrible aspect to their symptomatic expression of vertebral migration. Of all possible spondylolisthesis symptoms, incontinence certainly ranks as one of the worst in terms of disrupting a normal lifestyle, creating social restrictions, enacting vocational limitations and causing general embarrassment and loss of self-esteem.
Incontinence describes the inability to consciously control bowel or bladder functionality. Dysfunction of these systems can be minor, with patients experiencing minor occasional leaking of small quantities of urine or stool. Cases might be moderate, with regular leaks or occasional larger quantities of waste being accidentally released. The worst cases entail a complete loss of bladder or bowel control and all the lifestyle consequences that accompany this terrible fate.
This essay explores a very sensitive subjective related to vertebral slippage: the existence of incontinence affecting bowels or bladder. If you are fearful of developing incontinence, or are currently experiencing it to some degree, this article is perfectly suited for your research needs. Let’s get right to this important discussion on a subject that does not receive the attention it justly deserves.
Spondylolisthesis Incontinence Symptoms
Incontinence of both bladder and bowel can be rated according to several presentations and attributes, including the amount of warning time a patient might have before realizing that an accidental discharge of urine or feces is imminent, the degree of control they have in stopping the occurrence and the volume of discharge that is expelled.
An early signs of incontinence might be great urgency in needing to use the bathroom, with little warning. However, not all patients are fortunate enough to receive such a transitional time to acclimate to the condition, as some cases present acutely and without warning. Typically, for patients who do experience these warnings, the time of onset between the initial feeling of urgency and the time of actual release might shorten rather quickly.
Some patients are completely unaware that they need to urinate or defecate and often experiencing leakage without any sign. Others might begin leaking when laughing or when performing physically strenuous labor.
Once patients realize that they are leaking urine or feces, some can control the expulsion to some degree, while some can not.
All of these factors considered, incontinence can be classified ranging from minor leaking with warning and with the ability to stop eliminating waste to the complete voiding of bowels or passing of urine without any warning or ability to stop whatsoever.
Spondylolisthesis Incontinence Causes
Incontinence in relation to spondylolisthesis can be caused by a few distinct causative scenarios:
Cervical spondylolisthesis can misalign the central vertebral canal, causing compression of the spinal cord. This form of spinal stenosis can cause widespread symptoms, including loss of bladder or bowel control, as well as a selection of other painful expressions.
Similarly, lumbar spondylolisthesis can misalign the lower vertebral canal, compressing the cauda equina en masse within the central space or any of the exiting nerve roots within the neuroforaminal openings. Both of these occurrences can contribute to incontinence, but central stenosis has a greater chance of affecting the mid to low sacral nerve roots that directly innervate these systems.
Less severe listhesis can still influence posture and physical function, particularly when it occurs in the lower spine. Some listhesis profiles therefore can indirectly influence the piriformis muscle, causing it to clamp down on the sciatic or pudendal nerves. When the pudendal nerve is affected, incontinence may occur, but this is a rare consequence of any spondylolisthesis issue.
Spondylolisthesis Incontinence Help
Incontinence is considered a medical emergency in cases of neurological compression. Failure to resolve these expressions might lead to permanent neurological dysfunction for life. Most cases involve cauda equina syndrome enacted by high grade 3 or 4 listhesis, while a minority of cases involve high grade cervical listhesis compressing the spinal cord. Both conditions will usually be treated immediately with invasive surgical care, including laminectomy and spinal fusion to increase patency of the spinal canal and realign the spine into a normal anatomical configuration.
For exceptional cases where the listhesis is not as severe, but might influence piriformis syndrome expressions, conservative care might be the best course of action, with postural correction, physical therapy, Botox injections and manipulation being some of the more effective practices.