How is lumbar spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis graded?

Updated: Jul 08, 2020
  • Author: Beth B Froese, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen Kishner, MD, MHA  more...
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The most commonly used grading system for spondylolisthesis is the one proposed by Meyerding in 1947. The degree of slippage is measured as the percentage of distance the anteriorly translated vertebral body has moved forward relative to the superior end plate of the vertebra below. Classifications use the following grading system:

  • Grade 1: 1- 25% slippage

  • Grade 2: 26-50% slippage

  • Grade 3: 51-75% slippage

  • Grade 4: 76-100% slippage (see the image below)

    Grade 4 traumatic spondylolisthesis. Grade 4 traumatic spondylolisthesis.
  • Grade 5: Greater than 100% slippage

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