“Skip” corpectomy in the treatment of multilevel cervical spondylotic myelopathy and ossified posterior longitudinal ligament

Technical note

Sedat Dalbayrak
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Mesut Yilmaz
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Sait Naderi
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Object

The authors reviewed the results of “skip” corpectomy in 29 patients with multilevel cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM) and ossified posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL).

Methods

The skip corpectomy technique, which is characterized by C-4 and C-6 corpectomy, C-5 osteophytectomy, and C-5 vertebral body preservation, was used for decompression in patients with multilevel CSM and OPLL. All patients underwent spinal fixation using C4–5 and C5–6 grafts, and anterior cervical plates were fixated at C-3, C-5, and C-7.

Results

The mean preoperative Japanese Orthopaedic Association score increased from 13.44 ± 2.81 to 16.16 ± 2.19 after surgery (p < 0.05). The cervical lordosis improved from 1.16 ± 11.74° to 14.36 ± 7.85° after surgery (p < 0.05). The complications included temporary hoarseness in 3 cases, dysphagia in 1 case, C-5 nerve palsy in 1 case, and C-7 screw pullout in 1 case. The mean follow-up was 23.2 months. The final plain radiographs showed improved cervical lordosis and fusion in all cases.

Conclusions

The authors conclude that the preservation of the C-5 vertebral body provided an additional screw purchase and strengthened the construct. The results of the current study demonstrated effectiveness and safety of the skip corpectomy in patients with multilevel CSM and OPLL.

Abbreviations used in this paper:

ACDF = anterior cervical decompression and fusion; CSM = cervical spondylotic myelopathy; JOA = Japanese Orthopaedic Association; OPLL = ossified posterior longitudinal ligament; VB = vertebral body.
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