Author(s): Castro C, Oliveira L, Amaral R, Marchi L, Pimenta L
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Lumbar degenerative scoliosis is a common condition in the elderly. Open traditional surgical approaches are associated with high-morbidity complication rates. Less invasive options may carry fewer risks in this patient population. A minimally disruptive lateral transpsoas retroperitoneal technique to accomplish interbody fusion was developed to avoid the morbidity of traditional open surgery, but this approach as an anterior stand-alone construction has not been reported yet for the treatment of adult degenerative scoliosis. QUESTIONS/PURPOSES: We determined (1) the clinical outcomes (VAS scores for back and leg, Oswestry Disability Index), (2) the radiographic outcomes (Cobb angle, lumbar lordosis, sacral slope, high-grade subsidence, osseous fusion), and (3) the reoperation and complication rates in an older population undergoing this surgical approach. METHODS: Between 2004 and 2008, 62 patients were treated surgically for adult degenerative scoliosis, of whom 46 (74\%) were treated with stand-alone lateral lumbar interbody fusion; 11 of these (24\%) were lost to followup before 24 months, leaving the records of 35 patients (nine men, 26 women; mean ± SD age, 68 ± 10 years) available for this retrospective review. General indications for this approach included neurogenic claudication and radicular symptoms with history of chronic low-back pain. A total of 107 levels were treated (mean, three; range, one to seven). Clinical and radiographic outcomes were assessed at a followup of 24 months. RESULTS: Mean VAS back pain scores improved from 85 mm preoperatively to 27 mm at latest followup (p < 0.001). VAS leg pain scores improved from 91 mm to 24 mm (p < 0.001). Oswestry Disability Index scores improved from 51 to 29 (p < 0.001). Coronal alignment improved from Cobb angles of 21° to 12° (p < 0.001). Lumbar lordosis improved from 33° to 41° (p < 0.001). Sacral slope was enhanced from 28° to 35° (p < 0.001). Fusion rate was 84\% at final evaluation. High-grade subsidence was seen in 10 patients (29\%). Three patients (9\%) needed further surgical intervention. CONCLUSIONS: Use of the lateral approach achieved reasonable coronal and sagittal correction, as well as improvements in pain and function, in mild scoliotic deformities; however, subsidence was a concern, occurring in 29\% of patients. Questions still remain regarding the need for additional supplementation or the use of wider cages to prevent subsidence. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Level IV, therapeutic study. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
This article was published in Clin Orthop Relat Res
and referenced in Journal of Spine