Study Design.A retrospective cohort study was performed.Objective.The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy and safety of stopping segmental pedicle screw instrumentation constructs at L5 in the treatment of neuromuscular scoliosis.Summary of Background Data.Duchenne muscular dystrophy and spinal muscular atrophy are flaccid neuromuscular disorders in which gradual deterioration is the hallmark and have a lot of characteristics in common despite differences in etiology. Instrumentation and fusion to the sacrum/pelvis has been a mainstay in the surgical treatment of flaccid neuromuscular scoliosis and recommended to correct pelvic obliquity. However, the caudal extent of instrumentation and fusion in the surgical treatment of flaccid neuromuscular scoliosis has remained a matter of considerable debate and there have been few studies on the use of segmental pedicle screw instrumentation for flaccid neuromuscular scoliosis.Method.From 2005 to 2007, a total of 27 consecutive patients with neuromuscular disorders (20 Duchenne muscular dystrophy and 7 spinal muscular atrophy), aged 11 to 17 years, underwent segmental pedicle screw instrumentation and fusion only to L5. Assessment was performed clinically and with radiologic measurements. Minimum 2-year follow-up was required for inclusion in this study.Results.Twenty patients were enrolled in this study. No patient was lost to follow-up. All patients had L5 tilt of less than 15° and a coronal curve with apex L2 or higher preoperatively. Preoperative coronal curve averaged 70° (range: 51°–88°), with a postoperative mean of 15° (range: 5°–25°) and 17° (range: 6°–27°) at the last follow-up. The pelvic obliquity improved from 15° (range: 9°–25°) preoperatively to 5° (range: 3°–8°) postoperatively and 6° (range: 3°–8°) at the last follow-up. The L5 tilt improved from 9° (range: 2°–14°) preoperatively to 2° (range: 0°–4°) postoperatively and 2° (range: 0°–5°) at the last follow-up. Physiologic sagittal plane alignment was recreated after surgery and maintained long-term. There was no significant loss of correction of coronal curve and pelvic obliquity. There was no major complication.Conclusion.Segmental pedicle screw instrumentation and fusion to L5 was safe and effective in patients with flaccid neuromuscular scoliosis with apex L2 or higher and minimal L5 tilt of less than 15°. Segmental pedicle screw instrumentation ending at L5 offered the ability to correct spinal deformity and pelvic obliquity initially, intermediate and even long-term, with no major complications. This method in appropriate patients can be a viable alternative to instrumentation and fusion to the sacrum/pelvis in the surgical treatment of flaccid neuromuscular scoliosis.Level of Evidence: N/A
Spine – Wolters Kluwer Health
Published: Mar 1, 2018
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