A short-segment fusion strategy using a wide-foot-plate expandable cage for vertebral pseudarthrosis after an osteoporotic vertebral fracture

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  • 1 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Wakayama Medical University;
  • 2 Spine Care Center, Wakayama Medical University Kihoku Hospital, Katsuragi-cho;
  • 3 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Hidaka Hospital; and
  • 4 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Saiseikai Wakayama Hospital, Wakayama, Japan
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OBJECTIVE

Various surgical treatments have been reported for vertebral pseudarthrosis after osteoporotic vertebral fracture (OVF). However, the outcomes are not always good. The authors now have some experience with combined anterior-posterior short-segment spinal fusion (1 level above and 1 level below the fracture) using a wide-foot-plate expandable cage. Here, they report their surgical outcomes with this procedure.

METHODS

Between June 2016 and August 2018, 16 consecutive patients (4 male and 12 female; mean age 75.1 years) underwent short-segment spinal fusion for vertebral pseudarthrosis or delayed collapse after OVF. The mean observation period was 20.1 months. The level of the fractured vertebra was T12 in 4 patients, L1 in 3, L2 in 4, L3 in 3, and L4 in 2. Clinical outcomes were assessed using the lumbar Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) scale and 100-mm visual analog scale for low-back pain. Local kyphotic angle, intervertebral height, bone union rate, and instrumentation-related adverse events were investigated as imaging outcomes. The data were analyzed using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test.

RESULTS

The mean operating time was 334.3 minutes (range 256–517 minutes), and the mean blood loss was 424.9 ml (range 30–1320 ml). The only perioperative complication was a superficial infection of the posterior wound that was cured by irrigation. The lumbar JOA score and visual analog scale value improved from 11.2 and 58.8 mm preoperatively to 20.6 and 18.6 mm postoperatively, respectively. The mean local kyphotic angle and mean intervertebral height were 22.6° and 28.0 mm, respectively, before surgery, −1.5° and 40.5 mm immediately after surgery, and 7.0° and 37.1 mm at the final observation. Significant improvement was observed in both parameters immediately after surgery and at the final observation when compared with the preoperative values. Intraoperative endplate injury occurred in 8 cases, and progression of cage subsidence of 5 mm or more was observed in 2 of these cases. Proximal junctional kyphosis was observed in 2 cases. There were no cases of screw loosening. No cases required reoperation due to instrument-related adverse events. Bone union was observed in all 14 cases that had CT evaluation.

CONCLUSIONS

This short-segment fusion procedure is relatively minimally invasive, and local reconstruction and bone fusion have been achieved. This procedure is considered to be attempted for the surgical treatment of osteoporotic vertebral pseudarthrosis after OVF.

ABBREVIATIONS ADL = activities of daily living; JOA = Japanese Orthopaedic Association; OVF = osteoporotic vertebral fracture; VAS = visual analog scale.

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Contributor Notes

Correspondence Ryo Taiji: Wakayama Medical University, Wakayama, Japan. ryotaiji@gmail.com.

INCLUDE WHEN CITING Published online August 21, 2020; DOI: 10.3171/2020.5.SPINE2062.

Disclosures The authors report no conflict of interest concerning the materials or methods used in this study or the findings specified in this paper.

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