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Ely Ashkenazi, Yossi Smorgick, Nahshon Rand, Michael A. Millgram, Yigal Mirovsky and Yizhar Floman

Object. The authors retrospectively evaluated the safety and efficacy of a decompression and fixation technique in the treatment of patients with multilevel cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM).

Methods. The authors describe the “hybrid decompression fixation” technique, a procedure involving a combination of corpectomies and discectomies to preserve a vertebra intact within the area of the decompression, thus augmenting mechanical stability. The authors retrospectively reviewed outcomes in 25 patients with multilevel CSM in whom the hybrid technique was performed between 1999 and 2003. Twelve patients underwent a single-level corpectomy and three-level discectomies. In 13 patients a two-level corpectomy and adjacent four-level discectomies were conducted, leaving a vertebral bridge the middle. All patients underwent fusion involving placement of disc and vertebral body cages filled with autogenous local bone and supplemental anterior dynamic plate fixation.

The mean preoperative Nurick grade was 3 and improvement in status was reflected by a postoperative decrease to 2.6 (p < 0.05). In one patient neurological deterioration was demonstrated. At the end of the follow-up period (mean 29 months) radiography revealed evidence of osseous fusion in 24 patients; fusion status could not be determined in one patient. No evidence of late-onset instrumentation-related failure was observed in any of the 25 patients.

Conclusions. The authors found the hybrid technique to be safe and efficient for anterior decompression in patients with multilevel CSM. The use of this technique obviates the need for staged circumferential procedures.

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Yossi Smorgick, Yigal Mirovsky, Yizhar Floman, Nahshon Rand, Michael Millgram and Yoram Anekstein

OBJECTIVE

The authors evaluated the long-term clinical outcome of a total posterior arthroplasty system in the surgical treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis with degenerative spondylolisthesis.

METHODS

Between June 2006 and July 2007, 10 patients with neurogenic claudication due to spinal stenosis and single-level degenerative spondylolisthesis were enrolled in a nonrandomized prospective clinical study. The patients were evaluated with radiographs and MRI scans, the visual analog scale (VAS) for back and leg pain, the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), and the SF-36 health survey preoperatively and at 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, 3 years, 7 years, and 11 years postoperatively.

RESULTS

The mean VAS score for leg pain dropped from 83.5 before surgery to 13 at 6 weeks and 17 at 11 years after surgery. The mean VAS score for back pain dropped from 56.2 preoperatively to 12.5 at 6 weeks and 14 at 11 years after surgery. The mean ODI score decreased from 49.1 preoperatively to 13.5 at 6 weeks and 16 at 11 years after surgery. MRI at 11 years demonstrated stenosis adjacent to the stabilized segment in one patient. This patient was not symptomatic. The authors did not find evidence of progression of the spondylolisthesis in any of the cases. In one patient, conversion to posterolateral fusion was performed due to an early device malfunction.

CONCLUSIONS

The results of this 11-year follow-up study demonstrate that, in patients with spinal stenosis and degenerative spondylolisthesis, decompression and posterior arthroplasty maintain clinical improvement and radiological stability.

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Yizhar Floman, Ron El-Hawary, Michael A. Millgram, Baron S. Lonner and Randal R. Betz

OBJECTIVE

A posterior dynamic deformity correction (PDDC) system was used to correct adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) without fusion. The preliminary outcomes of bridging only 3–4 discs in patients with variable curve severity have previously been reported. This paper examines a subgroup of patients with the authors’ proposed current indications for this device who were also treated with a longer construct.

METHODS

Inclusion criteria included a single AIS structural curve between 40° and 60°, curve flexibility ≤ 30°, PDDC spanning 5–6 levels, and minimum 2-year follow-up. A retrospective review was conducted and demographic and radiographic data were recorded. A successful outcome was defined as a curve magnitude of ≤ 30° at final follow-up. Any serious adverse events and reoperations were recorded.

RESULTS

Twenty-two patients who met the inclusion criteria were operated on with the PDDC in 5 medical centers. There were 19 girls and 3 boys, aged 13–17 years, with Risser grades ≥ 2. Thirteen had Lenke type 1 curves and 9 had type 5 curves. The mean preoperative curve was 47° (range 40°–55°). At a minimum of 2 years’ follow-up, the mean major curve measured 25° (46% correction, p < 0.05). In 18 (82%) of 22 patients, the mean final Cobb angle measured ≤ 30° (range 15°–30°). Trunk shift was corrected by 1.5 cm (range 0.4–4.3 cm). The mean minor curve was reduced from 27° to 17° at final follow-up (35% correction, p < 0.05). For Lenke type 1 patterns, the mean 2D thoracic kyphosis was 24° preoperatively versus 27° at final follow-up (p < 0.05), and for Lenke type 5 curves, mean lumbar lordosis was 47° preoperatively versus 42° at final follow-up (p < 0.05). The mean preoperative Scoliosis Research Society-22 questionnaire score improved from 2.74 ± 0.3 at baseline to 4.31 ± 0.4 at 2 years after surgery (p < 0.0001). The mean preoperative self-image score and satisfaction scores improved from preoperative values, while other domain scores did not change significantly. Four patients (18%) underwent revision surgery because of nut loosening (n = 2), pedicle screw backup (n = 1), and ratchet malfunction (n = 1).

CONCLUSIONS

In AIS patients with a single flexible major curve up to 60°, the fusionless PDDC device achieved a satisfactory result as 82% had residual curves ≤ 30°. These findings suggest that the PDDC device may serve as an alternative to spinal fusion in select patients.