Predictors for Airway Complications Following Single- and Multilevel Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion

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Abstract

Study Design.

A retrospective, multivariate analyses of a prospectively collected multicenter database.

Objective.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the risk factors for postoperative airway complications following single- and multilevel anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF).

Summary of Background Data.

Airway compromise following ACDF may result in catastrophic outcome. However, its predictors have not been identified by a multi-institutional study.

Methods.

Patients who underwent ACDF between 2011 and 2013 were selected from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to identify the risk factors for airway compromise following ACDF.

Results.

Twelve thousand one hundred eighty-five patients were analyzed in this study. Our multivariate analysis identified older age, male gender, dependent functional status, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, bleeding disorder, American Society of Anesthesiology class >2, Wound Class >2, and prolonged operative durations as significant predictors of postoperative airway compromise following ACDF. Surprisingly, multilevel and corpectomy procedures were not significant risk factors for airway complication following ACDF.

Conclusion.

We identified significant risk factors for airway compromise following ACDF procedures. While ACDF is considered a safe procedure, postoperative airway complication can lead to disastrous outcome. Continued efforts to elucidate preoperative risk factors and subsequent optimization are warranted to improve outcomes in ACDF.

Conclusion.

Level of Evidence: 3

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