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Bang-ping Qian, Ji-chen Huang, Yong Qiu, Bin Wang, Yang Yu, Ze-zhang Zhu, Sai-hu Mao, and Jun Jiang


To describe the incidence of complications in spinal osteotomy for thoracolumbar kyphosis caused by ankylosing spondylitis (AS) and to investigate the risk factors for these complications.


From April 2000 to July 2017, 342 consecutive AS patients with a mean age (± SD) of 35.4 ± 9.8 years (range 17–71 years) undergoing spinal osteotomy were enrolled. Patients with complications within the 1st postoperative year were identified. Demographic, radiological, and surgical data were compared between patients with and without complications. The complications were classified into intraoperative and postoperative complications.


A total of 310 consecutive pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO) and 37 multiple Smith-Petersen osteotomy (SPO) procedures were performed in 342 patients. Overall, 47 complications were identified in 47 patients (13.7%), including 31 intraoperative complications and 16 postoperative complications. Patients with complications were older than those without (p = 0.006). A significant difference was observed in preoperative global kyphosis (GK), lumbar lordosis (LL), sagittal vertical axis (SVA), and the correction of these radiographic parameters between patients with and without complications (p < 0.05). Two-level PSO (p = 0.022) and an increased number of instrumented vertebrae (p = 0.019) were significantly associated with an increased risk of complications.


The overall incidence of complications was 13.7%. Age; preoperative GK, LL, and SVA; the correction of GK, LL, and SVA; 2-level PSO; and number of instrumented vertebrae were risk factors. Therefore, the potential risk of extensive surgeries with large correction and long fusion in older AS patients with severe GK should be seriously considered in surgical decision-making.

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Shi-zhou Zhao, Bang-ping Qian, Ji-chen Huang, Mu Qiao, Bin Wang, and Yong Qiu


Both unchanged upper cervical lordosis combined with decreased lower cervical lordosis and decreased upper cervical lordosis combined with decreased lower cervical lordosis have been reported to occur after correction surgery for adult spinal deformity. However, variations in cervical alignment after correction surgery in patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) have not been investigated. The current study aimed to investigate the variations in cervical alignment following the correction surgery in AS patients with thoracolumbar kyphosis.


Patients with AS who underwent pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO) for thoracolumbar kyphosis from June 2016 to June 2019 with a minimum of 1-year follow-up were reviewed. Patients were grouped according to the presence (ossified group) and absence (non-ossified group) of total ossification of the anterior longitudinal ligament (ALL) in the lower cervical spine. Radiographic parameters, including thoracolumbar, craniocervical, and global radiographic parameters, were measured on lateral sitting EOS images.


Thirty-two patients (27 males and 5 females) with a mean follow-up of 1.5 years were identified. There were 21 patients in the non-ossified group and 11 patients in the ossified group. After PSO, both groups showed a decrease in the occiput–C7 angle (p < 0.001 for both). In the non-ossified group, the C2–7 angle decreased significantly (p < 0.001), while the occiput–C2 angle remained unchanged (p = 0.570). In the ossified group, the occiput–C2 angle decreased significantly (p < 0.001), while C2–7 angle remained unchanged (p = 0.311). In addition, the change in occiput–C2 was correlated with the osteotomy angle in the ossified group (R = 0.776, p = 0.005).


The variation patterns of cervical alignment following correction surgery for AS-related thoracolumbar kyphosis were different based on patients with or without total ossification of ALL in the lower cervical spine. When planning PSO for patients in the ossified group, restoration of the physiological upper cervical lordosis angle could be achieved by adjusting the osteotomy angle.

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Jau-Ching Wu, Laura Liu, Yu-Chun Chen, Wen-Cheng Huang, Tzeng-Ji Chen, and Henrich Cheng


This study aimed to calculate the incidence and prevalence of ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) in the cervical spine with its comorbid disability.


Using an 11-year nationwide database in Taiwan (National Health Insurance Research Database), this retrospective study cohort analyzed the incidences of cervical OPLL causing hospitalization. All patients admitted for the diagnosis of OPLL, regardless of surgery, were identified. Age- and sex-specific incidences, Poisson regression, and multivariate logistic regression analysis were conducted.


Between 1997 and 2007 covering 241,800,725.8 person-years, 1651 patients were admitted for OPLL. The overall incidence of OPLL-related admission was 6.1 per 1 million person-years. Specifically, male sex and older age were associated with higher OPLL incidences (both p < 0.001). Among the 1651 OPLL patients, 542 (32.8%) received conservative management, 612 (37.1%) had anterior only surgery, 353 (21.4%) had posterior only surgery, and 144 (8.7%) had anterior and posterior surgery. Eighty-five patients were moderately to severely disabled (5.2% cumulative incidence rate). The incidences of disability varied by age, in a decreasing trend, except for the 60- to 69-year-old age group (p = 0.05). Patients who received posterior-only surgery were more likely to have disability.


In a large cohort of the Chinese population, the incidence of cervical OPLL-related admission is 6.1 per 1 million person-years, and the prevalence rate is 7.7 per 100,000 person-years. Higher incidences are observed in elderly and male patients, which implies the disease's degenerative nature. After adjustments for demographics, the incidences and trends of OPLL-related comorbid disability are associated with age and surgical approaches.