Author(s): Mihara H, Cheng BC, David SM, Ohnari K, Zdeblick TA
Abstract Share this page
Abstract STUDY DESIGN: Biomechanical stability using four different posterior cervical fixation techniques was evaluated in human cadaveric spine. OBJECTIVES: To introduce an alternative interspinous fixation technique using wavy-shaped rods, and to compare its in vitro biomechanical stability with that of other posterior cervical fixation techniques. SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA: Fixation of the posterior cervical spine with interspinous wiring is well known as Rogers' or Bohlman's technique. Recently, several plate fixation techniques have been used for posterior cervical stabilization. Since 1983, the authors have developed the wavy-shaped rod system as an alternative to the interspinous fixation technique. This unique technique has been proven clinically useful in Japan. However, the authors are not aware of any prior biomechanical studies. METHODS: Seven fresh frozen cervical human spines were tested at the C5-C6 motion segment. Nondestructive static biomechanical testing was performed with flexion-extension, lateral bending, and axial rotation for the following stabilization techniques: intact spine, creation of a Stage 3 distractive-flexion injury followed by fixation with the wavy-shaped rods bounded by three multistrand cables, interspinous wiring with a multistrand cable, triple wiring technique using multistrand cables with a pair of unicortical grafts from the ilium, and lateral mass plate fixation with Magerl's screw technique. Testing was performed on a material testing machine (MTS 858 Bionix test system, MTS, Minneapolis, MN), and load displacement curves were obtained using four linear extensometers and one rotatory extensometer across the C5-C6 motion segment. RESULTS: In axial compression loading, the reconstructed specimens showed significant differences in range of motion measured at the anterior and posterior positions, and statistical analysis was performed using one-way analysis of variance. In a comparison of the four fixation techniques, the construct with the wavy-shaped rod indicated significantly less motion both anteriorly and posteriorly than with the other fixation techniques. Also in flexion-extension loading, all the techniques significantly limited the intervertebral motion below the level of the intact motion segment. Particularly, the construct with the wavy-shaped rod showed the smallest mobility, 49.9\% anteriorly and 9.3\% posteriorly, compared with that of the intact spine. In lateral bending, the lateral mass plate provided the greatest stability, which was superior to the intact segment, but the difference was not statistically significant. In axial rotation, all the reconstruction techniques limited the angular motion below the intact level (wavy rod, 68.0\%; Rogers' wiring, 75.2\%; Bohlman's triple wiring, 59.8\%; lateral mass plate, 71.7\%), but no significant differences were observed using one-way analysis of variance, as compared with the intact segment. CONCLUSIONS: All four reconstruction techniques restored the stability of the cervical motion segment to at least the level of the intact motion segment before destabilization. An alternative cervical posterior fixation technique, the Wavy Rod system, was considered the most effective technique in stabilizing a cervical motion segment, particularly in axial compression and flexion extension loading.
This article was published in Spine (Phila Pa 1976)
and referenced in Journal of Trauma & Treatment