Objectives: The purpose of this study is to study the safety and efficacy of single-stage transpedicular decompression/debridement and instrumented posterior spinal fusion for single-level thoracic spinal tuberculosis with myelopathy without anterior column reconstruction.
Summary of background data: Existing literature has many reports of transpedicular decompression/debridement and instrumented posterior spinal fusion with anterior column reconstruction. The quoted loss of correction is around 2°, but there is no strong evidence analyzing the loss of kyphosis correction, assessment of fusion in the same, without anterior column reconstruction.
Study design: Retrospective study.
Methods: Study consisted of 57 patients of single-level thoracic tuberculosis with myelopathy from a single center who fulfilled the selection criteria. All underwent pedicle screw-rod instrumentation (2 up and 2 down), bilateral transpedicular decompression/debridement of granulation tissue/abscess, followed by instrumented posterior spinal fusion with local bone/B-tri-calcium phosphate. Patients were analyzed clinically (ASIA scoring) and radiologically by radiographs for kyphosis correction and CT scans at 2 years (for assessment of fusion). The grade of destruction was correlated with loss of kyphosis correction and neurologic improvement.
Results: There are 43 female and 14 male patients with a mean age of 46.7 years (18.4-74.2), mean follow-up of 3.4 years (2.1-8.4). The mean pre-op Cobb angle is 26.4° and mean correction obtained is 12.6° (47.8%). The mean loss of kyphosis after 2 years' follow-up is 3.6° (13.6%). The mean American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) grade improvement after surgery is 1.05 (p = .001). There is no correlation observed between neurologic recovery and grade of destruction (R = -0.11). There is no correlation between the improvement in kyphosis and neurologic recovery (R = -0.05). Two-year postoperative CT scan showed solid interbody (55 patients) and posterior fusion (57 patients).
Conclusion: Significant neurologic recovery, kyphosis correction, and posterior/interbody bony fusion can be obtained by transpedicular decompression/debridement and instrumented posterior spinal fusion (without anterior reconstruction) with maintained correction at 2 years.
Keywords: Anterior reconstruction; Myelopathy; Posterior spinal fusion; Single staged transpedicular fixation; Spinal tuberculosis; Transpedicular decompression.
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