Clinical and radiological outcomes of lumbar posterior subtraction osteotomies are correlated to pelvic incidence and FBI index : Prospective series of 63 cases

Eur Spine J. 2016 Aug;25(8):2657-67. doi: 10.1007/s00586-016-4424-5. Epub 2016 Feb 10.


Purpose: Pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO) is one of the surgical options for treating alignment disorders of the fused spine (due to post-surgical fusion or related to arthritis). It enables satisfactory sagittal realignment and improved function due to economic sagittal balance. The aim of this study was to analyze clinical and radiological results of PSO after a minimum follow-up of 2 years and demonstrate the benefit of sub-group analysis as a function of pelvic incidence (PI).

Methods: A descriptive prospective single center study of 63 patients presenting with spinal global malalignment who underwent correction by PSO. Function was assessed by the Oswestry disability index (ODI), a visual analog scale of lumbar pain (VAS) and a SF-36 questionnaire. Radiographic analyses of pre- and post-operative pelvic-spinal parameters were performed on X-rays obtained by EOS(®) imaging after 3D modeling. Global analysis and analysis of sub-groups as a function of pelvic incidence were performed and the full balance integrated index (FBI) was calculated.

Results: this series showed a marked clinical improvement and significant progress of functional scores. Global post-operative radiological analysis showed a significant improvement in all pelvic and spinal parameters. The mean correction obtained after PSO was 31.7° ± 8.4°, hence global improvement of lumbar lordosis of 22°. The sagittal vertical angle (SVA) decreased from +9 cm before surgery to +4.3 cm after surgery. Sub-group analysis demonstrated greater improvement in pelvic tilt, sacral slope and spinal parameters of patients with a small or moderate pelvic incidence; all had an FBI index <10°. Most of the pelvic and spinal parameters of patients with a large pelvic incidence were insufficiently corrected and they had an FBI index >10°

Conclusion: PSO is a surgical procedure enabling correction of multiplane rigid spinal deformities that require major sagittal correction. It was seen to be highly effective in patients with a small or moderate pelvic incidence (PI <60°) but was sometimes less effective in patients with large pelvic incidence due to insufficient lordosis correction. Clinical results were highly correlated with the value of the FBI index.

Keywords: Flat back; Outcomes; Pedicular subtraction osteotomy; Prospective series; Sagittal imbalance.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Low Back Pain
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / surgery*
  • Osteotomy* / methods
  • Osteotomy* / statistics & numerical data
  • Pelvis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Posture / physiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Spinal Diseases / surgery*