Differences in Fundamental Sagittal Pelvic Parameters Based on Age, Sex, and Race

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Abstract

Study Design:

This is a retrospective cohort study.

Objective:

To determine whether age, sex, and race have independent effects on sagittal pelvic parameters.

Summary of Background Data:

Pelvic parameters and sagittal balance correlate with health-related quality of life and are important for patient assessment and surgical planning. Age, sex, and race are 3 unalterable patient factors that may influence pelvic morphology.

Methods:

We conducted a retrospective review of consecutive adult patients who presented to our radiology practice between 2010 and 2015 and had a standing, lateral lumbosacral radiograph. Any patients without both femoral heads and L1–S1 visible on the radiograph, and any patients presenting with traumatic injury, coronal deformity, prior instrumentation, spondylolisthesis, or neoplasm of the spine were excluded. Univariate analysis determined differences in measurements among African American, white, and Hispanic races, as well as between male and female sexes. Correlation analysis between age and different measurements was also conducted. Multivariable regression was then used to determine the independent effect of age, sex, and race on pelvic parameters.

Results:

We investigated 1801 adults (older than 18 y) and 1246 had a recorded race. There were 1165 women, 636 men, 525 whites, 404 African Americans, and 317 Hispanics. Multivariable regression demonstrated a statistically significant increase in pelvic tilt (PT), pelvic incidence (PI), and pelvic incidence-lumbar lordosis (PI-LL) with aging, and statistically significant decrease in sacral slope (SS) and LL with aging. Women had a statistically greater LL than men. African Americans had a statistically smaller PT and greater SS and PI-LL relative to whites, while Hispanics had a statistically smaller PT and PI-LL, and a statistically greater SS and LL relative to whites.

Conclusions:

Pelvic parameters were different between sexes, among races, and changed with age. These findings are important for patient assessment and preoperative planning to obtain optimal sagittal balance.

Level of Evidence:

Level 3.

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