Adult thoracolumbar and lumbar scoliosis treated with long vertebral fusion to the sacropelvis: a comparison between new hybrid selective spinal fusion versus anterior-posterior spinal instrumentation

Spine J. 2014 Apr;14(4):637-45. doi: 10.1016/j.spinee.2013.06.090. Epub 2013 Nov 6.


Background context: Combined anteroposterior spinal fusion with instrumentation has been used for many years to treat adult thoracolumbar/lumbar scoliosis. This surgery remains a technical challenge to spine surgeons, and current literature reports high complication rates.

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to validate a new hybrid technique (a combination of single-rod anterior instrumentation and a shorter posterior instrumentation to the sacrum) to treat adult thoracolumbar/lumbar scoliosis.

Study design: This study is a retrospective consecutive case series of surgically treated patients with adult lumbar or thoracolumbar scoliosis.

Patient sample: This is a retrospective study of 33 matched pairs of patients with adult scoliosis who underwent two different surgical procedures: a new hybrid technique versus a third-generation anteroposterior spinal fusion.

Outcome measures: Preoperative and postoperative outcome measures include self-report measures, physiological measures, and functional measures.

Methods: In a retrospective case-control study, 33 patients treated with the hybrid technique were matched with 33 patients treated with traditional anteroposterior fusion based on preoperative radiographic parameters. Mean follow-up in the hybrid group was 5.3 years (range, 2-11 years), compared with 4.6 years (range, 2-10 years) in the control group. Operating room (OR) time, estimated blood loss, and levels fused were collected as surrogates for surgical morbidity. Radiographic parameters were collected preoperatively, postoperatively, and at final follow-up. The Scoliosis Research Society Patient Questionnaire (SRS-22r) and Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) scores were collected for clinical outcomes.

Results: Operating room time, EBL, and levels fused were significantly less in the hybrid group compared with the control group (p<.0001). The postoperative thoracic Cobb angle was similar between the hybrid and control techniques (p=.24); however, the hybrid technique showed significant improvement in the thoracolumbar/lumbar curves (p=.004) and the lumbosacral fractional curve (p<.0001). The major complication rate was less in the hybrid group compared with the control group (18% vs. 39%, p=.01). Clinical outcomes at final follow-up were not significantly different based on overall SRS-22r scores and ODI scores.

Conclusion: The new hybrid technique demonstrates good long-term results, with less morbidity and fewer complications than traditional anteroposterior surgery select patients with thoracolumbar/lumbar scoliosis. This study received no funding. No potential conflict of interest-associated bias existed.

Keywords: Adult idiopathic degenerative scoliosis; Anterior instrumentation; Anteroposterior spinal fusion; Long posterior spinal instrumentation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Postoperative Period
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sacrum / surgery*
  • Scoliosis / surgery*
  • Spinal Fusion / instrumentation
  • Spinal Fusion / methods*
  • Thoracic Vertebrae / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome