Publications by authors named "Sigurd Berven"

201 Publications

Reoperation and Mortality Rates Following Elective 1 to 2 Level Lumbar Fusion: A Large State Database Analysis.

Global Spine J 2021 Jan 21:2192568220986148. Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Study Design: Retrospective cohort.

Objective: Reoperation to lumbar spinal fusion creates significant burden on patient quality of life and healthcare costs. We assessed rates, etiologies, and risk factors for reoperation following elective 1 to 2 level lumbar fusion.

Methods: Patients undergoing elective 1 to 2 level lumbar fusion were identified using the Health Care Utilization Project (HCUP) state inpatient databases from Florida and California. Patients were tracked for 5 years for any subsequent lumbar fusion. Cox proportional hazard analyses for reoperation were assessed using the following covariates: fusion approach type, age, race, Charlson comormidity index, gender, and length of stay. Distribution of etiologies for reoperation was then assessed.

Results: 71, 456 patients receiving elective 1 to 2 level lumbar fusion were included. A 5-year reoperation rate of 13.53% and mortality rate of 2.22% was seen. Combined anterior-posterior approaches (HR = 0.904, p < 0.05) and TLIF (HR = 0.867, p < 0.001) were associated with reduced risk of reoperation compared to stand-alone anterior approaches and non-TLIF posterior approaches. Age, gender, and number of comorbidities were not associated with risk of reoperation. From 1 to 5 years, degenerative disease rose from 43.50% to 50.31% of reoperations; mechanical failure decreased from 37.65% to 29.77%.

Conclusions: TLIF and combined anterior-posterior approaches for 1 to 2 level lumbar fusion are associated with the lowest rate of reoperation. Number of comorbidities and age are not predictive of reoperation. Primary etiologies leading to reoperation were degenerative disease and mechanical failure. Mortality rate is not increased from baseline following 1 to 2 level lumbar fusion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2192568220986148DOI Listing
January 2021

Impact of New Motor Deficit on HRQOL After Adult Spinal Deformity Surgery: Subanalysis From Scoli Risk 1 Prospective Study.

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2021 Apr;46(7):E450-E457

Department of Neurosurgery and Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA.

Study Design: International, multicenter, prospective, longitudinal observational cohort.

Objective: To assess how new motor deficits affect patient reported quality of life scores after adult deformity surgery.

Summary Of Background Data: Adult spinal deformity surgery is associated with high morbidity, including risk of new postoperative motor deficit. It is unclear what effect new motor deficit has on Health-related Quality of Life scores (HRQOL) scores.

Methods: Adult spinal deformity patients were enrolled prospectively at 15 sites worldwide. Other inclusion criteria included major Cobb more than 80°, C7-L2 curve apex, and any patient undergoing three column osteotomy. American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) scores and standard HRQOL scores were recorded pre-op, 6 weeks, 6 months, and 2 years.

Results: Two hundred seventy two complex adult spinal deformity (ASD) patients enrolled. HRQOL scores were worse for patients with lower extremity motor score (LEMS). Mean HRQOL changes at 6 weeks and 2 years compared with pre-op for patients with motor worsening were: ODI (+12.4 at 6 weeks and -4.7 at 2 years), SF-36v2 physical (-4.5 at 6 weeks and +2.3 at 2 years), SRS-22r (0.0 at 6 weeks and +0.4 at 2 years). Mean HRQOL changes for motor-neutral patients were: ODI (+0.6 at 6 weeks and -12.1 at 2 years), SF-36v2 physical (-1.6 at 6 weeks and +5.9 at 2 years), and SRS-22r (+0.4 at 6 weeks and +0.7 at 2 years). For patients with LEMS improvement, mean HRQOL changes were: ODI (-0.6 at 6 weeks and -16.3 at 2 years), SF-36v2 physical (+1.0 at 6 weeks and +7.0 at 2 years), and SRS-22r (+0.5 at 6 weeks and +0.9 at 2 years).

Conclusion: In the subgroup of deformity patients who developed a new motor deficit, total HRQOLs and HRQOL changes were negatively impacted. Patients with more than 2 points of LEMS worsening had the worst changes, but still showed overall HRQOL improvement at 6 months and 2 years compared with pre-op baseline.Level of Evidence: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003852DOI Listing
April 2021

Long-term radiographic outcomes of expandable versus static cages in transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion.

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Nov 13:1-10. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Departments of1Neurosurgery and.

Objective: Potential advantages of using expandable versus static cages during transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) are not fully established. The authors aimed to compare the long-term radiographic outcomes of expandable versus static TLIF cages.

Methods: A retrospective review of 1- and 2-level TLIFs over a 10-year period with expandable and static cages was performed at the University of California, San Francisco. Patients with posterior column osteotomy (PCO) were subdivided. Fusion assessment, cage subsidence, anterior and posterior disc height, foraminal dimensions, pelvic incidence (PI), segmental lordosis (SL), lumbar lordosis (LL), pelvic incidence-lumbar lordosis mismatch (PI-LL), pelvic tilt (PT), sacral slope (SS), and sagittal vertical axis (SVA) were assessed.

Results: A consecutive series of 178 patients (with a total of 210 levels) who underwent TLIF using either static (148 levels) or expandable cages (62 levels) was reviewed. The mean patient age was 60.3 ± 11.5 years and 62.8 ± 14.1 years for the static and expandable cage groups, respectively. The mean follow-up was 42.9 ± 29.4 months for the static cage group and 27.6 ± 14.1 months for the expandable cage group. Within the 1-level TLIF group, the SL and PI-LL improved with statistical significance regardless of whether PCO was performed; however, the static group with PCOs also had statistically significant improvement in LL and SVA. The expandable cage with PCO subgroup had significant improvement in SL only. All of the foraminal parameters improved with statistical significance, regardless of the type of cages used; however, the expandable cage group had greater improvement in disc height restoration. The incidence of cage subsidence was higher in the expandable group (19.7% vs 5.4%, p = 0.0017). Within the expandable group, the unilateral facetectomy-only subgroup had a 5.6 times higher subsidence rate than the PCO subgroup (26.8% vs 4.8%, p = 0.04). Four expandable cages collapsed over time.

Conclusions: Expandable TLIF cages may initially restore disc height better than static cages, but they also have higher rates of subsidence. Unilateral facetectomy alone may result in more subsidence with expandable cages than using bilateral PCO, potentially because of insufficient facet release. Although expandable cages may have more power to induce lordosis and restore disc height than static cages, subsidence and endplate violation may negate any significant gains compared to static cages.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.SPINE191378DOI Listing
November 2020

The impact of increasing interbody fusion levels at the fractional curve on lordosis, curve correction, and complications in adult patients with scoliosis.

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Nov 13:1-10. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Departments of1Neurosurgery and.

Objective: Radiculopathy from the fractional curve, usually from L3 to S1, can create severe disability. However, treatment methods of the curve vary. The authors evaluated the effect of adding more levels of interbody fusion during treatment of the fractional curve.

Methods: A single-institution retrospective review of adult patients treated for scoliosis between 2006 and 2016 was performed. Inclusion criteria were as follows: fractional curves from L3 to S1 > 10°, ipsilateral radicular symptoms concordant on the fractional curve concavity side, patients who underwent at least 1 interbody fusion at the level of the fractional curve, and a minimum 1-year follow-up. Primary outcomes included changes in fractional curve correction, lumbar lordosis change, pelvic incidence - lumbar lordosis mismatch change, scoliosis major curve correction, and rates of revision surgery and postoperative complications. Secondary analysis compared the same outcomes among patients undergoing posterior, anterior, and lateral approaches for their interbody fusion.

Results: A total of 78 patients were included. There were no significant differences in age, sex, BMI, prior surgery, fractional curve degree, pelvic tilt, pelvic incidence, pelvic incidence - lumbar lordosis mismatch, sagittal vertical axis, coronal balance, scoliotic curve magnitude, proportion of patients undergoing an osteotomy, or average number of levels fused among the groups. The mean follow-up was 35.8 months (range 12-150 months). Patients undergoing more levels of interbody fusion had more fractional curve correction (7.4° vs 12.3° vs 12.1° for 1, 2, and 3 levels; p = 0.009); greater increase in lumbar lordosis (-1.8° vs 6.2° vs 13.7°, p = 0.003); and more scoliosis major curve correction (13.0° vs 13.7° vs 24.4°, p = 0.01). There were no statistically significant differences among the groups with regard to postoperative complications (overall rate 47.4%, p = 0.85) or need for revision surgery (overall rate 30.7%, p = 0.25). In the secondary analysis, patients undergoing anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) had a greater increase in lumbar lordosis (9.1° vs -0.87° for ALIF vs transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion [TLIF], p = 0.028), but also higher revision surgery rates unrelated to adjacent-segment pathology (25% vs 4.3%, p = 0.046). Higher ALIF revision surgery rates were driven by rod fracture in the majority (55%) of cases.

Conclusions: More levels of interbody fusion resulted in increased lordosis, scoliosis curve correction, and fractional curve correction. However, additional levels of interbody fusion up to 3 levels did not result in more postoperative complications or morbidity. ALIF resulted in a greater lumbar lordosis increase than TLIF, but ALIF had higher revision surgery rates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.SPINE20256DOI Listing
November 2020

The Impact of Obesity on Risk Factors for Adverse Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Elective Posterior Lumbar Spine Fusion.

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2021 Apr;46(7):457-463

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA.

Study Design: Retrospective case-control study.

Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the influence of obesity on risk factors for adverse outcome after lumbar spine fusion (LSF).

Summary Of Background Data: Obesity is risk factor for complications after LSF and poses unique challenges regarding optimization of care. Nonetheless, this patient population is not well-studied.

Methods: Adult patients undergoing LSF were identified the State Inpatient Database. Patients were identified as obese or nonobese using ICD-9 codes. Outcome variables were 90-day readmission, major medical complication, infection, and revision rates. Data were queried for demographics, comorbidities, surgery characteristics, and outcome variables. Logistic multivariate regression was utilized, serially testing interactions between obesity and other independent variables in separate models for each outcome. The Benjamini-Hochberg procedure was used to adjust statistical significance for multiple comparisons.

Results: A total of 262,153 patients were included: 31,062 obese and 231, 091 nonobese. For major complications, obese patients had lower odds ratios (ORs) versus nonobese patients for cerebrovascular accident, diabetes with chronic complications, age ≥65, congestive heart failure, history of myocardial infarction, renal disease, chronic pulmonary disease, Medicare/Medicaid payor, more than two levels fused, transforaminal/posterior lumbar interbody fusion, and female sex, and higher OR for non-White race. For readmission, obese patients had lower OR for age ≥65, history of MI, renal disease, and mental health disease, and higher OR for female sex. For revision, obese patients had higher OR for female sex and TLIF/PLIF. For infection, obese patients had lower OR for diabetes with and without chronic complications, and higher OR for female sex.

Conclusion: Many medical comorbidities have less impact in obese patients than nonobese patients in predicting adverse outcomes despite increased rates of adverse outcomes in obese patients. These findings reflect the impact of obesity as an independent risk factor and have important implications for preoperative optimization.Level of Evidence: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003812DOI Listing
April 2021

Development and Validation of a Multidomain Surgical Complication Classification System for Adult Spinal Deformity.

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2021 Feb;46(4):E267-E273

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA.

Study Design: Prospective analysis of example cases.

Objective: The aim of this study was to analyze the accuracy and repeatability of a new comprehensive classification system for capturing complications data in adult spinal deformity.

Summary Of Background Data: Complications are common in adult spinal deformity surgery. However, no consensus exists on the definition or classification of complications in adult spinal deformity surgery. The lack of consensus significantly limits understanding of complications' effects on outcomes in surgery for adult spinal deformity.

Methods: Using a Delphi method, members of the International Spine Study Group, AO Spine, and the European Spine Study Group collaborated to develop an adult spinal deformity classification system. The multidomain classification system accounts for medical complications (cancer, cardiopulmonary, central nervous system, gastrointestinal, infectious, musculoskeletal, renal) and surgical complications (implant complications, radiographic complications, neurologic events, intraoperative events, and wound complications). Seventeen individuals ("event readers"), including spine surgeons, trainees, and research coordinators, used the new classification system two separate times to analyze complications in ten example cases. The accuracy and repeatability of the classification system were subsequently calculated based on the providers' responses for the example cases.

Results: The 10 example cases included 22 complications. Nearly 95% of complications were captured by >95% of the event readers. The system demonstrated good repeatability of 86.9% between the first and second set of responses provided by event readers.

Conclusion: The ISSG-AO Multi-Domain Spinal Deformity Complication Classification System for Adult Spinal Deformity demonstrated good accuracy and repeatability among both surgeons and research coordinators in capturing complications in adult spinal deformity surgery. The ISSG-AO system may be applied to help better understand the impact of complications on outcomes and costs in adult spinal deformity surgery.Level of Evidence: 5.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003766DOI Listing
February 2021

Is the Goutallier grade of multifidus fat infiltration associated with adjacent-segment degeneration after lumbar spinal fusion?

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Oct 30:1-6. Epub 2020 Oct 30.

Departments of1Neurological Surgery and.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate whether fat infiltration of the lumbar multifidus (LM) muscle affects revision surgery rates for adjacent-segment degeneration (ASD) after L4-5 transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) for degenerative spondylolisthesis.

Methods: A total of 178 patients undergoing single-level L4-5 TLIF for spondylolisthesis (2006 to 2016) were retrospectively analyzed. Inclusion criteria were a minimum 2-year follow-up, preoperative MR images and radiographs, and single-level L4-5 TLIF for degenerative spondylolisthesis. Twenty-three patients underwent revision surgery for ASD during the follow-up. Another 23 patients without ASD were matched with the patients with ASD. Demographic data, Roussouly curvature type, and spinopelvic parameter data were collected. The fat infiltration of the LM muscle (L3, L4, and L5) was evaluated on preoperative MRI using the Goutallier classification system.

Results: A total of 46 patients were evaluated. There were no differences in age, sex, BMI, or spinopelvic parameters with regard to patients with and those without ASD (p > 0.05). Fat infiltration of the LM was significantly greater in the patients with ASD than in those without ASD (p = 0.029). Fat infiltration was most significant at L3 in patients with ASD than in patients without ASD (p = 0.017). At L4 and L5, there was an increasing trend of fat infiltration in the patients with ASD than in those without ASD, but the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.354 for L4 and p = 0.077 for L5).

Conclusions: Fat infiltration of the LM may be associated with ASD after L4-5 TLIF for spondylolisthesis. Fat infiltration at L3 may also be associated with ASD at L3-4 after L4-5 TLIF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.SPINE20238DOI Listing
October 2020

Clinical and Radiographic Outcomes After Minimally Invasive Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion-Early Experience Using a Biplanar Expandable Cage for Lumbar Spondylolisthesis.

Int J Spine Surg 2020 Dec 29;14(s3):S39-S44. Epub 2020 Oct 29.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco, California.

Background: Minimally invasive transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (MIS TLIF) is a surgical technique frequently used to treat symptomatic lumbar spondylolisthesis. We aim to investigate the safety and efficacy of using a biplanar expandable cage in the treatment of symptomatic lumbar spondylolisthesis using a MIS TLIF approach.

Methods: A retrospective review of patient records was performed on patients who underwent MIS TLIF for symptomatic lumbar spondylolisthesis using the FlareHawk cage over a 12-month period. Patient demographics, as well as preoperative and postoperative clinical and radiographic outcome measures were recorded and analyzed.

Results: A total of 13 consecutive patients underwent MIS TLIF for symptomatic spondylolisthesis during the study period. The mean age was 60.2 ± 13.9 years, and 61.5% were female. The mean preoperative and postoperative slippage was 7.0 ± 3.0 mm and 1.0 ± 1.9 mm, respectively. The preoperative mean segmental lordosis was 5.1° ± 6.0°, mean anterior, posterior disc, and foraminal height were 9.1 ± 3.9 mm, 5.7 ± 1.5 mm, and 11.0 ± 2.0 mm, respectively. The postoperative mean segmental lordosis was 6.8° ± 4.7°, and mean anterior, posterior disc, and foraminal height were 11.4 ± 2.2 mm, 7.8 ± 1.0 mm, and 12.3 ± 1.3 mm. There was improvement in all radiographic parameters postoperatively. The mean Visual Analog Scale (VAS) back pain, VAS leg pain improved from 7.0 ± 2.9 and 5.1 ± 3.0 preoperatively to 3.1 ± 2.9 and 1.1 ± 1.7 at the latest clinic follow-up visit, respectively ( = .0081). The mean EuroQol-Five Dimensions (EQ5D) score improved from 0.37 ± 1.7 to 0.66 ± 0.23 after surgery. There was no subsidence, endplate violation, cage migration, or other implant-related complications. No patient required reoperation.

Conclusions: The biplanar expandable cage is both safe and efficacious in treating symptomatic lumbar spondylolisthesis using the MIS TLIF approach. Spine surgeons should be familiar with the biplanar expandable cage technology and keep it in their armamentarium in surgical treatment of lumbar spondylolisthesis.

Level Of Evidence: 4.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14444/7125DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7735467PMC
December 2020

Obesity may be associated with adjacent-segment degeneration after single-level transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion in spinopelvic-mismatched patients with a minimum 2-year follow-up.

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Oct 9:1-6. Epub 2020 Oct 9.

1Departments of Neurological Surgery and.

Objective: In this study, the authors' aim was to investigate whether obesity affects surgery rates for adjacent-segment degeneration (ASD) after transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) for spondylolisthesis.

Methods: Patients who underwent single-level TLIF for spondylolisthesis at the University of California, San Francisco, from 2006 to 2016 were retrospectively analyzed. Inclusion criteria were a minimum 2-year follow-up, single-level TLIF, and degenerative lumbar spondylolisthesis. Exclusion criteria were trauma, tumor, infection, multilevel fusions, non-TLIF fusions, or less than a 2-year follow-up. Patient demographic data were collected, and an analysis of spinopelvic parameters was performed. The patients were divided into two groups: mismatched, or pelvic incidence (PI) minus lumbar lordosis (LL) ≥ 10°; and balanced, or PI-LL < 10°. Within the two groups, the patients were further classified by BMI (< 30 and ≥ 30 kg/m2). Patients were then evaluated for surgery for ASD, matched by BMI and PI-LL parameters.

Results: A total of 190 patients met inclusion criteria (72 males and 118 females, mean age 59.57 ± 12.39 years). The average follow-up was 40.21 ± 20.42 months (range 24-135 months). In total, 24 patients (12.63% of 190) underwent surgery for ASD. Within the entire cohort, 82 patients were in the mismatched group, and 108 patients were in the balanced group. Within the mismatched group, adjacent-segment surgeries occurred at the following rates: BMI < 30 kg/m2, 2.1% (1/48); and BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2, 17.6% (6/34). Significant differences were seen between patients with BMI ≥ 30 and BMI < 30 (p = 0.018). A receiver operating characteristic curve for BMI as a predictor for ASD was established, with an AUC of 0.69 (95% CI 0.49-0.90). The optimal BMI cutoff value determined by the Youden index is 29.95 (sensitivity 0.857; specificity 0.627). However, in the balanced PI-LL group (108/190 patients), there was no difference in surgery rates for ASD among the patients with different BMIs (p > 0.05).

Conclusions: In patients who have a PI-LL mismatch, obesity may be associated with an increased risk of surgery for ASD after TLIF, but in obese patients without PI-LL mismatch, this association was not observed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.SPINE20159DOI Listing
October 2020

Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion With Cage Retrieval for the Treatment of Pseudarthrosis After Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion: A Single-Institution Case Series.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2021 Jan;20(2):164-173

Department of Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California.

Background: The treatment of pseudarthrosis after transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) can be challenging, particularly when anterior column reconstruction is required. There are limited data on TLIF cage removal through an anterior approach.

Objective: To assess the safety and efficacy of anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) as a treatment for pseudarthrosis after TLIF.

Methods: ALIFs performed at a single academic medical center were reviewed to identify cases performed for the treatment of pseudarthrosis after TLIF. Patient demographics, surgical characteristics, perioperative complications, and 1-yr radiographic data were collected.

Results: A total of 84 patients were identified with mean age of 59 yr and 37 women (44.0%). A total of 16 patients (19.0%) underwent removal of 2 interbody cages for a total of 99 implants removed with distribution as follows: 1 L2/3 (0.9%), 6 L3/4 (5.7%), 37 L4/5 (41.5%), and 55 L5/S1 (51.9%). There were 2 intraoperative venous injuries (2.4%) and postoperative complications were as follows: 7 ileus (8.3%), 5 wound-related (6.0%), 1 rectus hematoma (1.1%), and 12 medical complications (14.3%), including 6 pulmonary (7.1%), 3 cardiac (3.6%), and 6 urinary tract infections (7.1%). Among 58 patients with at least 1-yr follow-up, 56 (96.6%) had solid fusion. There were 5 cases of subsidence (6.0%), none of which required surgical revision. Two patients (2.4%) required additional surgery at the level of ALIF for pseudarthrosis.

Conclusion: ALIF is a safe and effective technique for the treatment of TLIF cage pseudarthrosis with a favorable risk profile.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opaa303DOI Listing
January 2021

Consensus-based perioperative protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic.

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Oct 2:1-9. Epub 2020 Oct 2.

Departments of1Neurological Surgery.

Objective: During the COVID-19 pandemic, quaternary-care facilities continue to provide care for patients in need of urgent and emergent invasive procedures. Perioperative protocols are needed to streamline care for these patients notwithstanding capacity and resource constraints.

Methods: A multidisciplinary panel was assembled at the University of California, San Francisco, with 26 leaders across 10 academic departments, including 7 department chairpersons, the chief medical officer, the chief operating officer, infection control officers, nursing leaders, and resident house staff champions. An epidemiologist, an ethicist, and a statistician were also consulted. A modified two-round, blinded Delphi method based on 18 agree/disagree statements was used to build consensus. Significant disagreement for each statement was tested using a one-sided exact binomial test against an expected outcome of 95% consensus using a significance threshold of p < 0.05. Final triage protocols were developed with unblinded group-level discussion.

Results: Overall, 15 of 18 statements achieved consensus in the first round of the Delphi method; the 3 statements with significant disagreement (p < 0.01) were modified and iteratively resubmitted to the expert panel to achieve consensus. Consensus-based protocols were developed using unblinded multidisciplinary panel discussions. The final algorithms 1) quantified outbreak level, 2) triaged patients based on acuity, 3) provided a checklist for urgent/emergent invasive procedures, and 4) created a novel scoring system for the allocation of personal protective equipment. In particular, the authors modified the American College of Surgeons three-tiered triage system to incorporate more urgent cases, as are often encountered in neurosurgery and spine surgery.

Conclusions: Urgent and emergent invasive procedures need to be performed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The consensus-based protocols in this study may assist healthcare providers to optimize perioperative care during the pandemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.SPINE20777DOI Listing
October 2020

Revision Surgery for Adjacent Segment Degeneration after Fusion for Lumbar Spondylolisthesis: is there a Correlation with Roussouly Type?

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2020 Sep 24. Epub 2020 Sep 24.

Department of Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, USA.

Study Design: Retrospective study.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate whether there is an association between revision surgery rates for adjacent segment degeneration (ASD) and Roussouly type after L4-5 transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) for spondylolisthesis.

Summary Of Background Data: Revision surgery for ASD is known to occur after spinal fusion; however, it is unclear if rates of ASD are associated with certain Roussouly types.

Methods: Patients who underwent L4-5 TLIF for spondylolisthesis at the University of California San Francisco from January 2006 to December 2016 with minimum 2-year follow up were retrospectively analyzed by Roussouly type. Revision surgery for ASD was noted and correlated by Roussouly type. Spinopelvic parameters were also measured for correlation. A value of p < 0.05 was significant.

Results: There were 174 patients who met inclusion criteria, (59 males and 115 females). The average age was 62.3 (25-80) years. 132 patients had grade I spondylolisthesis, and 42 had grade II. Mean follow-up was 45.2 months (24 to 497). A total of 22 patients (12.6%) underwent revision surgery for ASD after L4-5 TLIF. When classified by Roussouly type, revision surgery rates for ASD were: 1, 14.3%; 2, 22.6%; 3, 4.9%; and 4, 15.6% (p = 0.013). Type 3 spines with normal PI-LL (8.85° ± 6.83°) had the lowest revision surgery rate (4.9%), and type 2 spines with PI-LL mismatch (11.06° ± 8.81°) had the highest revision surgery rate (22.6%), a 4-fold difference (p = 0.013). The PI-LL mismatch did not change significantly in each type post-operatively (p > 0.05).

Conclusion: We found that there may be a correlation between Roussouly type and revision surgery for ASD after L4-5 TLIF for spondylolisthesis, with type 2 spines having the highest rate. Spinopelvic parameters may also correlate with revision surgery for ASD after L4-5 TLIF.

Level Of Evidence: 4.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003708DOI Listing
September 2020

Clamshell thoracotomy for en bloc resection of a 3-level thoracic chordoma: technical note and operative video.

Neurosurg Focus 2020 09;49(3):E16

1Department of Neurological Surgery.

The clamshell thoracotomy is often used to access both hemithoraxes and the mediastinum simultaneously for cardiothoracic pathology, but this technique is rarely used for the excision of spinal tumors. We describe the use of a clamshell thoracotomy for en bloc excision of a 3-level upper thoracic chordoma in a 20-year-old patient. The lesion involved T2, T3, and T4, and it invaded both chest cavities and indented the mediastinum. After 2 biopsies to confirm the diagnosis, the patient underwent a posterior spinal fusion followed by bilateral clamshell thoracotomy for 3-level en bloc resection with simultaneous access to both chest cavities and the mediastinum. To demonstrate how the clamshell thoracotomy was used to facilitate the tumor resection, an operative video and illustrations are provided, which show in detail how the clamshell thoracotomy can be used to access both hemithoraxes and the mediastinum.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.FOCUS20382DOI Listing
September 2020

The effect of anterior lumbar interbody fusion staging order on perioperative complications in circumferential lumbar fusions performed within the same hospital admission.

Neurosurg Focus 2020 09;49(3):E6

Departments of1Neurological Surgery.

Objective: Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) is a powerful technique that provides wide access to the disc space and allows for large lordotic grafts. When used with posterior spinal fusion (PSF), the procedures are often staged within the same hospital admission. There are limited data on the perioperative risk profile of ALIF-first versus PSF-first circumferential fusions performed within the same hospital admission. In an effort to understand whether these procedures are associated with different perioperative complication profiles, the authors performed a retrospective review of their institutional experience in adult patients who had undergone circumferential lumbar fusions.

Methods: The electronic medicals records of patients who had undergone ALIF and PSF on separate days within the same hospital admission at a single academic center were retrospectively analyzed. Patients carrying a diagnosis of tumor, infection, or traumatic fracture were excluded. Demographics, surgical characteristics, and perioperative complications were collected and assessed.

Results: A total of 373 patients, 217 of them women (58.2%), met the inclusion criteria. The mean age of the study cohort was 60 years. Surgical indications were as follows: degenerative disease or spondylolisthesis, 171 (45.8%); adult deformity, 168 (45.0%); and pseudarthrosis, 34 (9.1%). The majority of patients underwent ALIF first (321 [86.1%]) with a mean time of 2.5 days between stages. The mean number of levels fused was 2.1 for ALIF and 6.8 for PSF. In a comparison of ALIF-first to PSF-first cases, there were no major differences in demographics or surgical characteristics. Rates of intraoperative complications including venous injury were not significantly different between the two groups. The rates of postoperative ileus (11.8% vs 5.8%, p = 0.194) and ALIF-related wound complications (9.0% vs 3.8%, p = 0.283) were slightly higher in the ALIF-first group, although the differences did not reach statistical significance. Rates of other perioperative complications were no different.

Conclusions: In patients undergoing staged circumferential fusion with ALIF and PSF, there was no statistically significant difference in the rate of perioperative complications when comparing ALIF-first to PSF-first surgeries.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.6.FOCUS20296DOI Listing
September 2020

The association between lower Hounsfield units of the upper instrumented vertebra and proximal junctional kyphosis in adult spinal deformity surgery with a minimum 2-year follow-up.

Neurosurg Focus 2020 08;49(2):E7

Departments of1Neurological Surgery and.

Objective: Patients undergoing long-segment fusions from the lower thoracic (LT) spine to the sacrum for adult spinal deformity (ASD) correction are at risk for proximal junctional kyphosis (PJK). One mechanism of PJK is fracture of the upper instrumented vertebra (UIV) or higher (UIV+1), which may be related to bone mineral density (BMD). Because Hounsfield units (HUs) on CT correlate with BMD, the authors evaluated whether HU values were correlated with PJK after long fusions for ASD.

Methods: The authors performed a retrospective study of patients older than 50 years who had undergone ASD correction from the LT spine to the sacrum in the period from October 2007 to January 2018 and had a minimum 2-year follow-up. Demographic and spinopelvic parameters were measured. HU values were measured on preoperative CT at the UIV, UIV+1, and UIV+2 (2 levels above the UIV) levels and were assessed for correlations with PJK.

Results: The records of 127 patients were reviewed. Fifty-four patients (19 males and 35 females) with a mean age of 64.91 years and mean follow-up of 3.19 years met the study inclusion criteria; there were 29 patients with PJK and 25 patients without. There was no statistically significant difference in demographics or follow-up between these two groups. Neither was there a difference between the groups with regard to postoperative pelvic incidence (PI), sacral slope (SS), lumbar lordosis (LL), PI minus LL (PI-LL), thoracic kyphosis (TK), or sagittal vertical axis (SVA; all p > 0.05). Postoperative pelvic tilt (p = 0.003) and T1 pelvic angle (p = 0.014) were significantly higher in patients with PJK than in those without. Preoperative HUs at UIV, UIV+1, and UIV+2 were 120.41, 124.52, and 129.28 in the patients with PJK, respectively, and 152.80, 155.96, and 160.00 in the patients without PJK, respectively (p = 0.011, 0.02, and 0.018). Three receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves for preoperative HU values at the UIV, UIV+1, and UIV+2 as a predictor for PJK were established, with areas under the ROC curve of 0.710 (95% CI 0.574-0.847), 0.679 (95% CI 0.536-0.821), and 0.681 (95% CI 0.539-0.824), respectively. The optimal HU value by Youden index was 104 HU at the UIV (sensitivity 0.840, specificity 0.517), 113 HU at the UIV+1 (sensitivity 0.720, specificity 0.517), and 110 HU at the UIV+2 (sensitivity 0.880, specificity 0.448).

Conclusions: In patients undergoing long-segment fusions from the LT spine to the sacrum for ASD, PJK was associated with lower HU values on CT at the UIV, UIV+1, and UIV+2. The measurement of HU values on preoperative CTs may be a useful adjunct for ASD surgery planning.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.5.FOCUS20192DOI Listing
August 2020

The association between lower Hounsfield units on computed tomography and cage subsidence after lateral lumbar interbody fusion.

Neurosurg Focus 2020 08;49(2):E8

Departments of1Neurosurgery and.

Objective: One vexing problem after lateral lumbar interbody fusion (LLIF) surgery is cage subsidence. Low bone mineral density (BMD) may contribute to subsidence, and BMD is correlated with Hounsfield units (HUs) on CT. The authors investigated if lower HU values correlated with subsidence after LLIF.

Methods: A retrospective study of patients undergoing single-level LLIF with pedicle screw fixation for degenerative conditions at the University of California, San Francisco, by 6 spine surgeons was performed. Data on demographics, cage parameters, preoperative HUs on CT, and postoperative subsidence were collected. Thirty-six-inch standing radiographs were used to measure segmental lordosis, disc space height, and subsidence; data were collected immediately postoperatively and at 1 year. Subsidence was graded using a published grade of disc height loss: grade 0, 0%-24%; grade I, 25%-49%; grade II, 50%-74%; and grade III, 75%-100%. HU values were measured on preoperative CT from L1 to L5, and each lumbar vertebral body HU was measured 4 separate times.

Results: After identifying 138 patients who underwent LLIF, 68 met the study inclusion criteria. All patients had single-level LLIF with pedicle screw fixation. The mean follow-up duration was 25.3 ± 10.4 months. There were 40 patients who had grade 0 subsidence, 15 grade I, 9 grade II, and 4 grade III. There were no significant differences in age, sex, BMI, or smoking. There were no significant differences in cage sizes, cage lordosis, and preoperative disc height. The mean segmental HU (the average HU value of the two vertebrae above and below the LLIF) was 169.5 ± 45 for grade 0, 130.3 ± 56.2 for grade I, 100.7 ± 30.2 for grade II, and 119.9 ± 52.9 for grade III (p < 0.001). After using a receiver operating characteristic curve to establish separation criteria between mild and severe subsidence, the most appropriate threshold of HU value was 135.02 between mild and severe subsidence (sensitivity 60%, specificity 92.3%). After univariate and multivariate analysis, preoperative segmental HU value was an independent risk factor for severe cage subsidence (p = 0.017, OR 15.694, 95% CI 1.621-151.961).

Conclusions: Lower HU values on preoperative CT are associated with cage subsidence after LLIF. Measurement of preoperative HU values on CT may be useful when planning LLIF surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.5.FOCUS20169DOI Listing
August 2020

Appropriate Management of Vertebral Fragility Fractures: Development of a Pathway Based on a Vertebral Compression Fracture Registry.

Pain Physician 2020 07;23(4):E343-E352

Department of Radiology, Summit Medical Center, Edmond, OK.

Background: The BenchMarket Medical (BMM) Vertebral Compression Fracture (VCF) Registry, now known as Talosix, is a collaborative effort between Talosix (the authorized registry vendor), Noridian Healthcare Solutions, and clinicians to gather outcomes evidence for cement augmentation treatments in patients with acute painful osteoporotic VCFs. The VCF Registry was designed to provide outcomes evidence to inform the Medicare payer's "coverage with evidence development" decision to authorize reimbursement for cement augmentation treatments.

Objectives: The purpose of this article was to present a pathway for appropriate use of vertebral augmentation based on the findings of the VCF Registry.

Study Design: Prospective observational data, including patient characteristics, diagnosis, process of care, and patient-reported outcomes (PROs) for pain and function, were collected from patients undergoing cement augmentation treatment. The PROs were collected at baseline, 1, 3, and 6 months following the procedure.

Setting: The VCF Registry is a national ongoing registry with no specified end time or designated sample size.

Methods: Primary outcomes were pain improvement measured using the Numeric Rating Scale and function improvement, measured using the Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire (RMDQ). Secondary outcomes included cement leakage, new neurologic deficits, adverse events, readmissions, and death.

Results: The VCF Registry delivered outcomes data to support Noridian's "coverage with evidence development" decision. A total of 732 patients were included in this study. Registry outcomes confirmed postmarket evidence of highly significant pain relief with mean pain score improvement of 6.5/10 points at 6 months. Function also improved significantly with mean RMDQ score change of 11.4/24 points 6 months after surgery. Results also showed the safety and reliability of cement augmentation.

Limitations: The nature of the registry data is that it contains nonrandomized, nonplacebo controlled data and should not be perceived as such. The real-world setting and the large number of patients within the dataset should increase the external validity of the findings.

Conclusions: Cement augmentation treatments of patients with acute painful VCFs reliably results in highly significant benefits of pain decrease and functional improvement for this Medicare population.

Key Words: Vertebral compression fractures, osteoporosis, kyphoplasty, back pain, registry.
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July 2020

Machine Learning for Predictive Modeling of 90-day Readmission, Major Medical Complication, and Discharge to a Facility in Patients Undergoing Long Segment Posterior Lumbar Spine Fusion.

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2020 Aug;45(16):1151-1160

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA.

Study Design: Retrospective case control study.

Objective: To develop predictive models for postoperative outcomes after long segment lumbar posterior spine fusion (LSLPSF).

Summary Of Background Data: Surgery for adult spinal deformity is effective for treating spine-related disability; however, it has high complication and readmission rates.

Methods: Patients who underwent LSLPSF (three or more levels) were identified in State Inpatient Database. Data was queried for discharge-to-facility (DTF), 90-day readmission, and 90-day major medical complications, and demographic, comorbid, and surgical data. Data was partitioned into training and testing sets. Multivariate logistic regression, random forest, and elastic net regression were performed on the training set. Models were applied to the testing set to generate AUCs. AUCs between models were compared using the method by DeLong et al. RESULTS.: 37,852 patients were analyzed. The DTF, 90-day readmission, and 90-day major medical complication rates were 35.4%, 19.0%, and 13.0% respectively. For DTF, the logistic regression AUC was 0.77 versus 0.75 for random forest and 0.76 for elastic net (P < 0.05 for all comparisons). For 90-day readmission, the logistic regression AUC was 0.65, versus 0.63 for both random forest and elastic net (P < 0.05 for all comparisons). For 90-day major medical complications, the logistic regression AUC was 0.70, versus 0.69 for random forest and 0.68 for elastic net (P < 0.05 for all comparisons).

Conclusion: This study created comprehensive models to predict discharge to facility, 90-day readmissions, and 90-day major medical complications after LSLPSF. This information can be used to guide decision making between the surgeon and patient, as well as inform value-based payment models.

Level Of Evidence: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003475DOI Listing
August 2020

The impact of obesity on perioperative complications in patients undergoing anterior lumbar interbody fusion.

J Neurosurg Spine 2020 Apr 24:1-10. Epub 2020 Apr 24.

1Department of Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco.

Objective: Anterior approaches to the lumbar spine provide wide exposure that facilitates placement of large grafts with high fusion rates. There are limited data on the effects of obesity on perioperative complications.

Methods: Data from consecutive patients undergoing anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) from 2007 to 2016 at a single academic center were analyzed. The primary outcome was any perioperative complication. Complications were divided into those occurring intraoperatively and those occurring postoperatively. Multivariate logistic regression was used to assess the association of obesity and other variables with these complications. An estimation table was used to identify a body mass index (BMI) threshold associated with increased risk of postoperative complication.

Results: A total of 938 patients were identified, and the mean age was 57 years; 511 were females (54.5%). The mean BMI was 28.7 kg/m2, with 354 (37.7%) patients classified as obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2). Forty patients (4.3%) underwent a lateral transthoracic approach, while the remaining 898 (95.7%) underwent a transabdominal retroperitoneal approach. Among patients undergoing transabdominal retroperitoneal ALIF, complication rates were higher for obese patients than for nonobese patients (37.0% vs 28.7%, p = 0.010), a difference that was driven primarily by postoperative complications (36.1% vs 26.0%, p = 0.001) rather than intraoperative complications (3.2% vs 4.3%, p = 0.416). Obese patients had higher rates of ileus (11.7% vs 7.2%, p = 0.020), wound complications (11.4% vs 3.4%, p < 0.001), and urinary tract infections (UTI) (5.0% vs 2.5%, p = 0.049). In a multivariate model, age, obesity, and number of ALIF levels fused were associated with an increased risk of postoperative complication. An estimation table including 19 candidate cut-points, odds ratios, and adjusted p values found a BMI ≥ 31 kg/m2 to have the highest association with postoperative complication (p = 0.012).

Conclusions: Obesity is associated with increased postoperative complications in ALIF, including ileus, wound complications, and UTI. ALIF is a safe and effective procedure. However, patients with a BMI ≥ 31 kg/m2 should be counseled on their increased risks and warrant careful preoperative medical optimization and close monitoring in the postoperative setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3171/2020.2.SPINE191418DOI Listing
April 2020

Outcomes and Quality of Life Improvement After Multilevel Spinal Fusion in Elderly Patients.

Global Spine J 2020 Apr 19;10(2):153-159. Epub 2019 May 19.

University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Study Design: Retrospective case series.

Objectives: Both the rate and complexity of spine surgeries in elderly patients has increased. This study reports the outcomes of multilevel spine fusion in elderly patients and provides evidence on the appropriateness of complex surgery in elderly patients.

Methods: We identified 101 patients older than70 years who had ≥5 levels of fusion. Demographic, medical, and surgical data, and change between preoperative and >500 days postoperative health survey scores were collected. Health surveys were visual analogue scale (VAS), EuroQoL 5 Dimensions (EQ-5D), Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), Scoliosis Research Society questionnaire (SRS-30), and Short Form health survey (SF-12) (physical composite score [PCS] and mental composite score [MCS]). Minimal clinically important differences (MCIDs) were defined for each survey.

Results: Complications included dural tears (19%), intensive care unit admission (48%), revision surgery within 2 to 5 years (24%), and death within 2 to 5 years (16%). The percentage of patients who reported an improvement in health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of at least an MCID was: VAS Back 69%; EQ-5D 41%; ODI 58%; SRS-30 45%; SF-12 PCS 44%; and SF-12 MCS 48%. Improvement after a primary surgery, as compared with a revision, was on average 13 points higher in ODI ( = .007). Patients who developed a surgical complication averaged an improvement 11 points lower on ODI ( = .042). Patients were more likely to find improvement in their health if they had a lower American Society of Anesthesiologists or Charlson Comorbidity Index score or a higher metabolic equivalent score.

Conclusions: In multilevel surgery in patients older than 70 years, complications are common, and on average 77% of patients attain some improvement, with 51% reaching an MCID. Physiological status is a stronger predictor of outcomes than chronological age.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2192568219849393DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7076597PMC
April 2020

New Paradigms in the Continuum of Spine Care: From Newborns to Elderly Patients.

Instr Course Lect 2019 ;68:289-304

The evaluation and management of spinal disorders is complex and constantly evolving. Back pain and spinal deformity are substantial contributors to hospital and outpatient physician visits even for young patients. With new insights into the etiology, clinical presentation, and evaluation, children can be more accurately diagnosed and treated. Patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis may undergo selective fusion to preserve motion segments, and in some cases, vertebral body tethering or other growth-modification techniques may provide correction with motion preservation in this rapidly changing specialty. The understanding of spinopelvic parameters (pelvic incidence, pelvic tilt, sacral slope) and sagittal balance as they relate to clinical health status has provided surgeons with valuable guidance when managing pediatric and adult spinal deformity. An evidence-based approach to the management of spinal disorders across the continuum of ages has the goal of improving the value of care through optimization of outcomes and limitation of costs and complications. There are new paradigms in the management of spinal disorders and evidence-based approaches to the evaluation and management of patients across the ages.
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February 2020

Cost Analysis of Single-Level Lumbar Fusions.

Global Spine J 2020 Feb 24;10(1):39-46. Epub 2019 Jun 24.

University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Study Design: Cost analysis of a retrospectively identified cohort of patients who had undergone primary single-level lumbar fusion at a single institution's orthopedic or neurosurgery department.

Objective: The purpose of this article is to analyze the determinants of direct costs for single-level lumbar fusions and identify potential areas for cost reduction.

Methods: Adult patients who underwent primary single-level lumbar fusion from fiscal years 2008 to 2012 were identified via administrative and departmental databases and were eligible for inclusion. Patients were excluded if they underwent multiple surgeries, had previous surgery at the same anatomic region, underwent corpectomy, kyphectomy, disc replacement, surgery for tumor or infection, or had incomplete cost data. Demographic data, surgical data, and direct cost data in the categories of supplies, services, room and care, and pharmacy, was collected for each patient.

Results: The cohort included 532 patients. Direct costs ranged from $8286 to $73 727 (median = $21 781; mean = $22 890 ± $6323). Surgical approach was an important determinant of cost. The mean direct cost was highest for the circumferential approach and lowest for posterior instrumented spinal fusions without an interbody cage. The difference in mean direct cost between transforaminal lumbar interbody fusions, anterior lumbar interbody fusions, and lateral transpsoas fusions was not statistically significant. Surgical supplies accounted for 44% of direct costs. Spinal implants were the primary component of supply costs (84.9%). Services accounted for 38% of direct costs and were highly dependent on operative time. Comorbidities were an important contributor to variance in the cost of care as evidenced by high variance in pharmacy costs and length of stay related to their management.

Conclusion: The costs of spinal surgeries are highly variable. Important cost drivers in our analysis included surgical approach, implants, operating room time, and length of hospital stay. Areas of high cost and high variance offer potential targets for cost savings and quality improvements.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2192568219853251DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6963351PMC
February 2020

Local Application of Vancomycin in Spine Surgery Does Not Result in Increased Vancomycin-Resistant Bacteria-10-Year Data.

Spine Deform 2019 09;7(5):696-701

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Stanford University, 450 Broadway St., Redwood City, CA 94063, USA. Electronic address:

Study Design: Case-control study.

Objectives: To analyze the microbial flora in surgical spine infections and their antibiotic resistance patterns across time and determine the correlation between vancomycin application in the wound and vancomycin-resistant microbes.

Summary Of Background Data: Prior studies show a reduction in surgical site infections with intrawound vancomycin placement. No data are available on the potential negative effects of this intervention, in particular, whether there would be a resultant increase in vancomycin-resistant organisms or bacterial resistance profiles.

Methods: All culture-positive surgical site infections at a single institution were analyzed from 2007 to 2017. Each bacterium was assessed independently for resistance patterns. The two-tailed Fisher exact test was used to determine the correlation between vancomycin application and the presence of vancomycin-resistant bacteria, polymicrobial infections, or gram-negative bacterial infections.

Results: One hundred and eight bacteria were isolated from 113 surgical site infections from 2007 to 2017. The most common organisms were staphylococcus with varying resistance patterns and Escherichia coli. Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium was isolated in three infections. Out of the 4,878 surgical cases from 2011 to 2017, vancomycin was placed in 48.3%, and no vancomycin in 51.7%. There were 33 infections (1.4%) in the vancomycin group and 20 infections (0.8%) in the no-vancomycin group (χ = 0.0521). There was no correlation between vancomycin application in the wound and vancomycin-resistant microbes (χ = 0.2334) and polymicrobial infections (χ = 0.1328). There was an increased rate of gram-negative organisms in infections after vancomycin application in the wound versus no vancomycin (χ = 0.0254).

Conclusions: Topical vancomycin within the surgical site is not correlated with vancomycin-resistant bacteria. However, there was an increased incidence of gram-negative organisms in infections after vancomycin application in the wound versus no vancomycin. Continued surveillance with prospectively collected randomized data is necessary to better understand bacterial evolution against current antimicrobial techniques.

Level Of Evidence: Level III.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jspd.2019.01.005DOI Listing
September 2019

Surgical Management of Thoracic Disc Herniation: Anterior vs Posterior Approach.

Turk Neurosurg 2019 ;29(4):584-593

VM Medical Park Pendik Hospital, Department of Orthopeadics and Traumatology, Istanbul, Turkey.

Aim: To compare outcomes and complications in patients with thoracic disc herniation (TDH) undergoing surgery with either the posterior or anterior approach.

Material And Methods: A total of 86 patients, with 98 symptomatic TDHs, who underwent surgery in a single institution between 2007 and 2016, were included. Overall, 68 patients were in the anterior and 18 were in the posterior group. Ten patients underwent multilevel TDH surgery.

Results: The groups were similar in age, sex, body mass index, and clinical symptoms. In the anterior group, 4 patients (5.9%) had major complications, and 26 (38.2%) had minor complications. In the posterior group, 6 patients (33.3%) had major complications, and 4 (22.2%) had minor complications. Visual analog scores at the final follow-up improved in both groups as compared to baseline preoperative scores (p > 0.05). The rate of neurological improvement in patients with myelopathy was significantly higher in the anterior group (43/50) than in the posterior group (8/14) (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: The current study showed that higher rates of major complications in central and calcified paracentral TDHs are associated with posterior approaches when compared to anterior approaches. In addition, anterior approaches had superior neurological recovery and clinical outcomes. Therefore, we recommend the anterior approach for the treatment of calcified and/or non-calcified central and calcified paracentral TDH, while reserving posterior approaches for small non-calcified paracentral disc herniations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5137/1019-5149.JTN.24969-18.2DOI Listing
October 2019

Asymmetric Pedicle Subtraction Osteotomy for Adult Spinal Deformity with Coronal Imbalance: Complications, Radiographic and Surgical Outcomes.

Oper Neurosurg (Hagerstown) 2020 02;18(2):209-216

Department of Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California.

Background: Asymmetric pedicle subtraction osteotomy (APSO) can be utilized for adult spinal deformity (ASD) with fixed coronal plane imbalance. There are few reports investigating outcomes following APSO and no series that include multiple revision cases.

Objective: To detail our surgical technique and experience with APSO.

Methods: All thoracolumbar ASD cases with a component of fixed, coronal plane deformity who underwent APSO from 2004 to 2016 at one institution were retrospectively reviewed. Preoperative and latest follow-up radiographic parameters and data on surgical outcomes and complications were obtained.

Results: Fourteen patients underwent APSO with mean follow-up of 37-mo. Ten (71.4%) were revision cases. APSO involved a mean 12-levels (range 7-25) and were associated with 3.0 L blood loss (range 1.2-4.5) and 457-min of operative time (range 283-540). Surgical complications were observed in 64.3%, including durotomy (35.7%), pleural injury (14.3%), persistent neurologic deficit (14.3%), rod fracture (7.1%), and painful iliac bolt requiring removal (7.1%). Medical complications were observed in 14.3%, comprising urosepsis and 2 cases of pneumonia. Two 90-d readmissions (14.3%) and 5 reoperations (4 patients, 28.6%) occurred. Mean thoracolumbar curve and coronal vertical axis improved from 31.5 to 16.4 degrees and 7.8 to 2.9 cm, respectively. PI-LL mismatch, mean sagittal vertical axis, and pelvic tilt improved from 40.0 to 27.9-degrees, 10.7 to 3.5-cm, and 34.4 to 28.3-degrees, respectively.

Conclusion: The APSO, in both a revision and non-revision ASD population, provides excellent restoration of coronal balance-in addition to sagittal and pelvic parameters. Employment of APSO must be balanced with the associated surgical complication rate (64.3%).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ons/opz106DOI Listing
February 2020

Responding to Intraoperative Neuromonitoring Changes During Pediatric Coronal Spinal Deformity Surgery.

Global Spine J 2019 May 8;9(1 Suppl):15S-21S. Epub 2019 May 8.

AOSpine Knowledge Forum Deformity, Davos, Switzerland.

Study Design: Retrospective case study on prospectively collected data.

Objectives: The purpose of this explorative study was: 1) to determine if patterns of spinal cord injury could be detected through intra-operative neuromonitoring (IONM) changes in pediatric patients undergoing spinal deformity corrections, 2) to identify if perfusion based or direct trauma causes of IONM changes could be distinguished, 3) to observe the effects of the interventions performed in response to these events, and 4) to attempt to identify different treatment algorithms for the different causes of IONM alerts.

Methods: Prospectively collected neuromonitoring data in pre-established forms on consecutive pediatric patients undergoing coronal spinal deformity surgery at a single center was reviewed. Real-time data was collected on IONM alerts with >50% loss in signal. Patients with alerts were divided into 2 groups: unilateral changes (direct cord trauma), and bilateral MEP changes (cord perfusion deficits).

Results: A total of 97 pediatric patients involving 71 females and 26 males with a mean age of 14.9 (11-18) years were included in this study. There were 39 alerts in 27 patients (27.8% overall incidence). All bilateral changes responded to a combination of transfusion, increasing blood pressure, and rod removal. Unilateral changes as a result of direct trauma, mainly during laminotomies for osteotomies, improved with removal of the causative agent. Following corrective actions in response to the alerts, all cases were completed as planned. Signal returned to near baseline in 20/27 patients at closure, with no new neurological deficits in this series.

Conclusion: A high incidence of alerts occurred in this series of cases. Dividing IONM changes into perfusion-based vs direct trauma directed treatment to the offending cause, allowing for safe corrections of the deformities. Patients did not need to recover IONM signal to baseline to have a normal neurological examination.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2192568219836993DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6512195PMC
May 2019

The Assessment of Clinically Significant Differences in Treating Spinal Deformity Using the SRS Questionnaire: What Is the Threshold of Change That Is Meaningful to Patients?

Int J Spine Surg 2019 Apr 30;13(2):153-157. Epub 2019 Apr 30.

University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington.

Background: The measurement of health-related quality of life is important in spinal deformity surgery. The Scoliosis Research Society questionnaire has allowed disease-specific research in this area, and determining the minimal clinically important difference (MCID) is as important as it is elusive. We seek to further refine our estimations of clinically perceived improvements by the patient.

Methods: We used an anchor-based approach for each domain of the SRS questionnaire to compare changes at 1 year after treatment. We set the MCID as the upper 95% boundary of the "no change" group bordering the "improvement" arm, where the patients may start to perceive their own change toward the better. We compared this with the mean change.

Results: The threshold value for the MCID was 0.54 for the pain domain, 0.31 for function, 0.62 for self-image, and 0.5 for mental health. The mean changes in our group's pain and self-image exceeded their MCID.

Conclusions: Compared with our previous work, we further attempted to refine our assessment of the MCID in spinal deformity. Pain continues to show clinically significant improvement, and self-image also demonstrated mean improvement over its estimated MCID.

Level Of Evidence: 2.

Clinical Relevance: This result in self-image is an important addition to the MCID literature, given its lack of consistency in previous work.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14444/6020DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6510187PMC
April 2019

A validated preoperative score for predicting 30-day readmission after 1-2 level elective posterior lumbar fusion.

Eur Spine J 2019 Jul 9;28(7):1690-1696. Epub 2019 Mar 9.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, 500 Parnassus Avenue, MU West 321, Box 0728, San Francisco, CA, 94143, USA.

Purpose: To develop a model to predict 30-day readmission rates in elective 1-2 level posterior lumbar spine fusion (PSF) patients.

Methods: In this retrospective case control study, patients were identified in the State Inpatient Database using ICD-9 codes. Data were queried for 30-day readmission, as well as demographic and surgical data. Patients were randomly assigned to either the derivation or the validation cohort. Stepwise multivariate analysis was conducted on the derivation cohort to predict 30-day readmission. Readmission after posterior spinal fusion (RAPSF) score was created by including variables with odds ratio (OR) > 1.1 and p < 0.01; value assigned to each variable was based on the OR and calibrated to 100. Linear regression was performed between readmission rate and RAPSF score to test correlation in both cohorts.

Results: There were 92,262 and 90,257 patients in the derivation and validation cohorts. Thirty-day readmission rates were 10.9% and 11.1%, respectively. Variables in RAPSF included: age, female gender, race, insurance, anterior approach, cerebrovascular disease, chronic pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure, diabetes, hemiplegia/paraplegia, rheumatic disease, drug abuse, electrolyte disorder, osteoporosis, depression, obesity, and morbid obesity. Linear regression between readmission rate and RAPSF fits the derivation cohort and validation cohort with an adjusted r of 0.92 and 0.94, respectively, and a coefficient of 0.011 (p < 0.001) in both cohorts.

Conclusion: The RAPSF can accurately predict readmission rates in PSF patients and may be used to guide an evidence-based approach to preoperative optimization and risk adjustment within alternative payment models for elective spine surgery.

Level Of Evidence: 3. These slides can be retrieved under Electronic Supplementary Material.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00586-019-05937-yDOI Listing
July 2019

ISSLS PRIZE IN BIOENGINEERING SCIENCE 2019: biomechanical changes in dynamic sagittal balance and lower limb compensatory strategies following realignment surgery in adult spinal deformity patients.

Eur Spine J 2019 05 2;28(5):905-913. Epub 2019 Mar 2.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, USA.

Study Design: A longitudinal cohort study.

Objective: To define a set of objective biomechanical metrics that are representative of adult spinal deformity (ASD) post-surgical outcomes and that may forecast post-surgical mechanical complications. Current outcomes for ASD surgical planning and post-surgical assessment are limited to static radiographic alignment and patient-reported questionnaires. Little is known about the compensatory biomechanical strategies for stabilizing sagittal balance during functional movements in ASD patients.

Methods: We collected in-clinic motion data from 15 ASD patients and 10 controls during an unassisted sit-to-stand (STS) functional maneuver. Joint motions were measured using noninvasive 3D depth mapping sensor technology. Mathematical methods were used to attain high-fidelity joint-position tracking for biomechanical modeling. This approach provided reliable measurements for biomechanical behaviors at the spine, hip, and knee. These included peak sagittal vertical axis (SVA) over the course of the STS, as well as forces and muscular moments at various joints. We compared changes in dynamic sagittal balance (DSB) metrics between pre- and post-surgery and then separately compared pre- and post-surgical data to controls.

Results: Standard radiographic and patient-reported outcomes significantly improved following realignment surgery. From the DSB biomechanical metrics, peak SVA and biomechanical loads and muscular forces on the lower lumbar spine significantly reduced following surgery (- 19 to - 30%, all p < 0.05). In addition, as SVA improved, hip moments decreased (- 28 to - 65%, all p < 0.05) and knee moments increased (+ 7 to + 28%, p < 0.05), indicating changes in lower limb compensatory strategies. After surgery, DSB data approached values from the controls, with some post-surgical metrics becoming statistically equivalent to controls.

Conclusions: Longitudinal changes in DSB following successful multi-level spinal realignment indicate reduced forces on the lower lumbar spine along with altered lower limb dynamics matching that of controls. Inadequate improvement in DSB may indicate increased risk of post-surgical mechanical failure. These slides can be retrieved under Electronic Supplementary Material.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00586-019-05925-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6536471PMC
May 2019