Swan-Neck Deformity following Extensive Cervical Laminectomy: A REVIEW OF TWENTY-ONE CASES

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Twenty-one patients, thirteen to sixty-two years old, were treated for cervical swan-neck deformity after extensive laminectomy (with or without foraminotomy), performed for cervical-disc syndrome in nine, spondylosis in six, syringomyelia in three, cord tumor in two, and old fracture-dislocation with nerveroot compression in one. Spontaneous fusion occurred in one patient after prolonged bracing. In the other twenty, the results of surgical stabilization (three posterior and seventeen anterior fusions) were excellent in nine, good in one, fair in four, and poor in six. It was concluded that bracing after extensive laminectomy is indicated, and may prevent this complication; that early recognition and anterior fusion are essential to prevent fixed severe deformity; and that fusion must extend the full length of the laminectomy.

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