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Mountain View, CA
A 31-year-old female asked:

i have a "chronic right l5 pars inter-articular defect" according to a ct scan (for unrelated injury). "chronic" sounds scary. should i be worried?

3 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Eric Goodman
Radiology 27 years experience
Indeterminate: The pars defect may be congenital or related to remote repeated stress. This finding needs to be correlated with clinical exam. X-rays with flexion and extension can be useful to determine if this is stable.
Dr. Steven Chmielewski
Diagnostic Radiology 30 years experience
No.: Chronic means it has been there for a long time. It has probably healed, or just been there for a long time.
Dr. William Nyman
Radiology 38 years experience
Not necessarily: A pars defect is a fracture(old or new) through a portion of a vertebrae that is a part of the posterior joints of the vertebrae, usually lumbar. Some of us may have one and never know it. Others, such as with a bilateral defect can have minimal or significant spine instability at that level which can cause progressive degenerative change and spinal stenosis. If you have back pain, tell your dr.

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Last updated Jan 5, 2019

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