Posterior spinal fusion for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis using a convex pedicle screw technique: A NOVEL CONCEPT OF DEFORMITY CORRECTION

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Abstract

Aims

We present the results of correcting a double or triple curve adolescent idiopathic scoliosis using a convex segmental pedicle screw technique.

Patients and Methods

We reviewed 191 patients with a mean age at surgery of 15 years (11 to 23.3). Pedicle screws were placed at the convexity of each curve. Concave screws were inserted at one or two cephalad levels and two caudal levels. The mean operating time was 183 minutes (132 to 276) and the mean blood loss 0.22% of the total blood volume (0.08% to 0.4%). Multimodal monitoring remained stable throughout the operation. The mean hospital stay was 6.8 days (5 to 15).

Results

The mean post-operative follow-up was 5.8 years (2.5 to 9.5). There were no neurological complications, deep wound infection, obvious nonunion or need for revision surgery.

Results

Upper thoracic scoliosis was corrected by a mean 68.2% (38% to 48%, p < 0.001). Main thoracic scoliosis was corrected by a mean 71% (43.5% to 8.9%, p < 0.001). Lumbar scoliosis was corrected by a mean 72.3% (41% to 90%, p < 0.001). No patient lost more than 3° of correction at follow-up. The thoracic kyphosis improved by 13.1° (-21° to 49°, p < 0.001); the lumbar lordosis remained unchanged (p = 0.58). Coronal imbalance was corrected by a mean 98% (0% to 100%, p < 0.001). Sagittal imbalance was corrected by a mean 96% (20% to 100%, p < 0.001). The Scoliosis Research Society Outcomes Questionnaire score improved from a mean 3.6 to 4.6 (2.4 to 4, p < 0.001); patient satisfaction was a mean 4.9 (4.8 to 5).

Conclusions

This technique carries low neurological and vascular risks because the screws are placed in the pedicles of the convex side of the curve, away from the spinal cord, cauda equina and the aorta. A low implant density (pedicle screw density 1.2, when a density of 2 represents placement of pedicle screws bilaterally at every instrumented segment) achieved satisfactory correction of the scoliosis, an improved thoracic kyphosis and normal global sagittal balance. Both patient satisfaction and functional outcomes were excellent.

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