Clinical outcome of laminoplasty for cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament with K-line (−) in the neck neutral position but K-line (+) in the neck extension position: A retrospective observational study


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Abstract

Patients with cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) who are K-line (−) are thought to have poor clinical outcomes after laminoplasty. The aim of this study is to compare the clinical results of patients with OPLL who were K-line (−) in the neck neutral position but K-line (+) in the neck extension position (NEP group) with patients with OPLL who were K-line (+) in the neck neutral position (NNP group).Retrospectively, 42 patients who underwent cervical laminoplasty for OPLL by our surgical group during 2012 and 2013 were reviewed and were followed for at least 2 years. The patients were divided into 2 groups according to K-line status. Standing plain radiographs of the cervical spine were obtained pre- and postoperatively. Cervical spine alignment parameters included the C2–7 Cobb angle and range of motion (ROM) measured on lateral radiographs. Clinical evaluation included pre- and postoperative JOA, NDI, and VAS scores.Ten patients were classified in the NEP group, and 32 patients were classified in the NNP group. Preoperatively, the OPLL involved segments were 4.10 ± 1.66 in the NEP group and 2.53 ± 1.16 in the NNP group (P = .005). The canal-occupying ratios were 58.40 ± 11.11% in the NEP group and 29.08 ± 11.38% in the NNP group (P < .001). The mean Cobb angle of both the groups had not changed significantly at the last follow-up. The mean cervical ROM of both the groups had decreased at the last follow-up. The mean JOA score of the NEP group improved significantly from 9.70 ± 2.16 to 12.50 ± 2.27 (P = .014). The mean JOA score of the NNP group improved significantly from 11.91 ± 1.69 to 14.93 ± 1.58 (P < .001). The mean JOA recovery rate was 32.71 ± 40.45% in the NEP group and 59.00 ± 33.80% in the NNP group (P = .036). The NDI scores of both groups were significantly decreased, and the VAS scores of both groups had not changed significantly at the last follow-up.Laminoplasty is a relatively effective and safe procedure for patients with K-line (−) in the neck neutral position but K-line (+) in the neck extension position. Instead of anterior surgery, we recommend laminoplasty for those patients with OPLL extending to 3 or more segments.

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