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The prognostic role of neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio, platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio, and systemic immune-inflammation index on short- and long-term outcome following surgery for spinal metastases

Jessica Ryvlin, Seung Woo Kim, Mousa K. Hamad, Mitchell S. Fourman, Ananth Eleswarapu, Saikiran G. Murthy, Yaroslav Gelfand, Rafael De la Garza Ramos, and Reza Yassari

OBJECTIVE

Inflammatory markers such as neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR), platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio (PLR), and systemic immune-inflammation index (SII) have shown promise in predicting mortality in various types of cancer. The purpose of this study was to assess NLR, PLR, and SII in predicting 30-day mortality and overall survival (OS) among surgically treated patients with spinal metastasis.

METHODS

This was a retrospective study including 153 patients who underwent surgery for spinal metastasis between 2012 and 2022. Electronic medical records were manually reviewed, and NLR, PLR, and SII were calculated from preoperative neutrophil, platelet, and lymphocyte counts. Receiver operating characteristic curves with areas under the curve were generated to determine cutoff values. Logistic regression was used to determine the odds ratios (ORs) for 30-day mortality. The Kaplan-Meier method and Cox regression were used to determine the hazard ratio (HR) for OS limited to 5 years postoperatively.

RESULTS

Preoperative cutoff values were as follows: NLR > 10.2, PLR > 260, and SII > 2900. Overall, 35.9% (55/153) of patients had elevated NLR, 45.7% (70/153) had elevated PLR, and 30.7% (47/153) had elevated SII. The overall 30-day mortality was 8.5% (13/153). After controlling for confounders such as performance status and primary tumor type, high NLR (OR 5.20, 95% CI 1.21–22.28; p = 0.026) and SII (OR 4.92, 95% CI 1.17–20.63; p = 0.029) were associated with increased odds of 30-day postoperative mortality. The median OS time in the study population was 26 months (95% CI 12–40 months). After controlling for confounders such as Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group status, primary tumor, and hypoalbuminemia, high NLR was associated with shorter OS (HR 2.23, 95% CI 1.48–3.97; p = 0.003).

CONCLUSIONS

High preoperative NLR and SII were independently associated with 30-day postoperative mortality in this study. Elevated NLR was also found to be associated with shorter OS. The prognostic role of these metrics warrants further investigation.

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Predictive value of six nutrition biomarkers in oncological spine surgery: a performance assessment for prediction of mortality and wound infection

Presented at the 2023 AANS/CNS Joint Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves

Rafael De la Garza Ramos, Jessica Ryvlin, Mousa K. Hamad, Mitchell S. Fourman, Yaroslav Gelfand, Saikiran G. Murthy, John H. Shin, and Reza Yassari

OBJECTIVE

Assessment of nutritional status is fundamental in cancer patients. The objective of this study was to assess the predictive ability of 6 nutritional biomarkers for postoperative mortality and wound infection after metastatic spinal tumor surgery.

METHODS

A total of 139 patients who underwent oncological surgery for metastatic spine disease between April 2012 and August 2022 and had a minimum follow-up of 90 days were included. Six unique nutritional biomarkers were assessed: Prognostic Nutritional Index (PNI), Nutritional Risk Index (NRI), Controlling Nutritional Status Score (CONUT), total psoas cross-sectional area (TPA), body mass index (BMI), and body weight. Study endpoints were 90-day mortality rate, 12-month mortality rate, and wound infection. The discriminative ability of each of these markers was assessed with the c-statistic. A multivariate analysis was done for each of the biomarkers after a univariate analysis was first performed.

RESULTS

The 90-day mortality rate was 27% (37 of 139). The biomarkers and respective c-statistics were as follows: PNI (0.74), NRI (0.75), CONUT (0.71), TPA (0.64), BMI (0.59), and body weight (0.60). The 12-month mortality rate was 56% (51 of 91). The biomarkers and respective c-statistics were as follows: PNI (0.72), NRI (0.73), CONUT (0.70), TPA (0.63), BMI (0.59), and body weight (0.60). The wound infection rate was 8% (11 of 139). The biomarkers and respective c-statistics were as follows: PNI (0.57), NRI (0.53), CONUT (0.55), TPA (0.57), BMI (0.48), and body weight (0.52). The PNI, NRI, and CONUT all predicted 90-day and 12-month mortality after multivariate regression analysis. No association between nutrition and wound infection was found.

CONCLUSIONS

In this study, nutritional status was associated with postoperative mortality following oncological spine surgery. Three biomarkers predicted outcome independent of variables such as performance status or primary cancer. Future validation of these metrics is needed.

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Evaluation of lymphopenia as a predictor of postoperative mortality and major complications in patients undergoing surgery for metastatic spine tumors

Jessica Ryvlin, Mousa K. Hamad, Justin Langro, Benjamin Wang, Pavan Patel, Rafael De la Garza Ramos, Saikiran G. Murthy, Yaroslav Gelfand, and Reza Yassari

OBJECTIVE

Lymphopenia is often seen in advanced metastatic disease and has been associated with poor postoperative outcomes. Limited research has been done to validate this metric in patients with spinal metastases. The objective of this study was to evaluate the capability of preoperative lymphopenia to predict 30-day mortality, overall survival (OS), and major complications in patients undergoing surgery for metastatic spine tumors.

METHODS

A total of 153 patients who underwent surgery for metastatic spine tumor between 2012 and 2022 and met the inclusion criteria were examined. Electronic medical record chart review was conducted to obtain patient demographics, comorbidities, preoperative laboratory values, survival time, and postoperative complications. Preoperative lymphopenia was defined as < 1.0 K/μL based on the institution’s laboratory cutoff value and within 30 days prior to surgery. The primary outcome was 30-day mortality. Secondary outcomes were OS up to 2 years and 30-day postoperative major complications. Outcomes were assessed with logistic regression. Survival analyses were done using the Kaplan-Meier method with log-rank test and Cox regression. Receiver operating characteristic curves were plotted to classify the predictive ability of lymphocyte count as a continuous variable on outcome measures.

RESULTS

Lymphopenia was identified in 47% of patients (72 of 153). The overall 30-day mortality rate was 9% (13 of 153). In logistic regression analysis, lymphopenia was not associated with 30-day mortality (OR 1.35, 95% CI 0.43–4.21; p = 0.609). The mean OS in this sample was 15.6 months (95% CI 13.9–17.3 months), with no significant difference between patients with lymphopenia and those with no lymphopenia (p = 0.157). Cox regression analysis did not show an association between lymphopenia and survival (HR 1.44, 95% CI 0.87–2.39; p = 0.161). The major complication rate was 26% (39 of 153). In univariable logistic regression analysis, lymphopenia was not associated with the development of a major complication (OR 1.44, 95% CI 0.70–3.00; p = 0.326). Finally, receiver operating characteristic curves generated poor discrimination between lymphocyte count and all outcomes, including 30-day mortality (area under the curve 0.600, p = 0.232).

CONCLUSIONS

This study does not support prior research that had shown an independent association between low preoperative lymphocyte level and poor postoperative outcomes following surgery for metastatic spine tumors. Although lymphopenia may be used to predict outcomes in other tumor-related surgeries, this metric may not hold a similar predictive capability in the population undergoing surgery for metastatic spine tumors. Further research into reliable prognostic tools is needed.

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The effectiveness of reducing endotracheal cuff pressure after retractor placement to decrease postoperative laryngeal dysfunction in anterior cervical surgery: a meta-analysis

Aaron Miller, Daniel W. Griepp, Chase Miller, Mousa Hamad, Rafael De la Garza Ramos, and Saikiran G. Murthy

OBJECTIVE

The authors sought to determine if a consensus could be reached regarding the effectiveness of endotracheal tube cuff pressure (ETTCP) reduction after retractor placement in reducing postoperative laryngeal dysfunction after anterior cervical fusion surgery.

METHODS

A literature search of MEDLINE (PubMed), EMBASE, Cochrane Central, Google Scholar, and Scopus databases was performed. Quantitative analysis was performed on data from articles comparing groups of patients with either reduced or unadjusted ETTCP after retractor placement in the context of anterior cervical surgery. The incidence and severity of postoperative recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy (RLNP), dysphagia, and dysphonia were compared at several postsurgical time points, ranging from 24 hours to 3 months. Heterogeneity was assessed using the chi-square test, I statistics, and inverted funnel plots. A random-effects model was used to provide a conservative estimate of the level of effect.

RESULTS

Nine studies (7 randomized, 1 prospective, and 1 retrospective) were included in the analysis. A total of 1671 patients were included (1073 [64.2%] in the reduced ETTCP group and 598 [35.8%] in the unadjusted ETTCP group). In the reduced ETTCP group, the severity of dysphagia, measured by the Bazaz-Yoo system in 3 randomized studies at 24 hours and at 4–8 weeks, was significantly lower (24 hours [standardized mean difference: −1.83, p = 0.04] and 4–8 weeks [standardized mean difference: −0.40, p = 0.05]). At 24 hours, the odds of developing dysphonia were significantly lower (OR 0.51, p = 0.002). The odds of dysphagia (24 hours: OR 0.77, p = 0.24; 1 week: OR 0.70, p = 0.47; 12 weeks: OR 0.58, p = 0.20) were lower, although not significantly, in the reduced ETTCP group. The odds of a patient having RLNP were significantly lower at all time points (24 hours: OR 0.38, p = 0.01; 12 weeks: OR 0.26, p = 0.03) when 3 randomized and 2 observational studies were analyzed. A subgroup analysis using only randomized studies demonstrated a similar trend in odds of having RLNP, yet without statistical significance (24 hours: OR 0.79, p = 0.60). All other statistically significant findings persisted with removal of any observational data.

CONCLUSIONS

Based on the current best available evidence, reduction of ETTCP after retractor placement in anterior cervical surgery may be a protective measure to decrease the severity of dysphagia and the odds of developing RLNP or dysphonia.

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Surgical correction of severe adult lumbar scoliosis (major curves ≥ 75°): retrospective analysis with minimum 2-year follow-up

Thomas J. Buell, Ching-Jen Chen, James H. Nguyen, Peter A. Christiansen, Saikiran G. Murthy, Avery L. Buchholz, Chun-Po Yen, Mark E. Shaffrey, Christopher I. Shaffrey, and Justin S. Smith

OBJECTIVE

Prior reports have demonstrated the efficacy of surgical correction for adult lumbar scoliosis. Many of these reports focused on mild to moderate scoliosis. The authors’ objective was to report their experience and to assess outcomes and complications after deformity correction for severe adult scoliosis.

METHODS

The authors retrospectively analyzed consecutive adult scoliosis patients with major thoracolumbar/lumbar (TL/L) curves ≥ 75° who underwent deformity correction at their institution. Those eligible with a minimum 2 years of follow-up were included. Demographic, surgical, coronal and sagittal plane radiographic measurements, and health-related quality of life (HRQL) scores were analyzed.

RESULTS

Among 26 potentially eligible patients, 22 (85%) had a minimum 2 years of follow-up (range 24–89 months) and were included in the study (mean age 57 ± 11 years; 91% women). The cohort comprised 16 (73%), 4 (18%), and 2 (9%) patients with adult idiopathic scoliosis, de novo degenerative scoliosis, and iatrogenic scoliosis, respectively. The surgical approach was posterior-only and multistage anterior-posterior in 18 (82%) and 4 (18%) patients, respectively. Three-column osteotomy was performed in 5 (23%) patients. Transforaminal and anterior lumbar interbody fusion were performed in 14 (64%) and 4 (18%) patients, respectively. All patients had sacropelvic fixation with uppermost instrumented vertebra in the lower thoracic spine (46% [10/22]) versus upper thoracic spine (55% [12/22]). The mean fusion length was 14 ± 3 levels. Preoperative major TL/L and lumbosacral fractional (L4–S1) curves were corrected from 83° ± 8° to 28° ± 13° (p < 0.001) and 34° ± 8° to 13° ± 6° (p < 0.001), respectively. Global coronal and sagittal balance significantly improved from 5 ± 4 cm to 1 ± 1 cm (p = 0.001) and 9 ± 8 cm to 2 ± 3 cm (p < 0.001), respectively. Pelvic tilt significantly improved from 33° ± 9° to 23° ± 10° (p < 0.001). Significant improvement in HRQL measures included the following: Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) pain score (p = 0.009), SRS appearance score (p = 0.004), and SF-12/SF-36 physical component summary (PCS) score (p = 0.026). Transient and persistent neurological deficits occurred in 8 (36%) and 2 (9%) patients, respectively. Rod fracture/pseudarthrosis occurred in 6 (27%) patients (supplemental rods were utilized more recently in 23%). Revisions were performed in 7 (32%) patients.

CONCLUSIONS

In this single-center surgical series for severe adult scoliosis (major curves ≥ 75°), a posterior-only or multistage anterior-posterior approach provided major curve correction of 66% and significant improvements in global coronal and sagittal spinopelvic alignment. Significant improvements were also demonstrated in HRQL measures (SRS pain, SRS appearance, and SF-12/SF-36 PCS). Complications and revisions were comparable to those of other reports involving less severe scoliosis. The results of this study warrant future prospective multicenter studies to further delineate outcomes and complication risks for severe adult scoliosis correction.