Prevalence of Sagittal Spinal Deformity Among Patients Undergoing Total Hip Arthroplasty

J Arthroplasty. 2020 Jan;35(1):160-165. doi: 10.1016/j.arth.2019.08.020. Epub 2019 Aug 10.


Background: The important relationship between sagittal spinal alignment and total hip arthroplasty (THA) is becoming well recognized. Prior research has shown a significant relationship between sagittal spinal deformity (SSD) and THA instability. This study aims at determining the prevalence of SSD among preoperative THA patients.

Methods: A multicenter database of preoperative THA patients was analyzed. Radiographic parameters measured from standing radiographs included anterior pelvic plane tilt, spinopelvic tilt, and lumbar lordosis (LL); pelvic incidence (PI) was measured from computed tomography scans. Lumbar flatback was defined as PI-LL mismatch >10°, balanced as PI-LL of -10° to 10°, and hyperlordosis as PI-LL <-10°.

Results: A total of 1088 patients were analyzed (mean, 64 years; 48% female). And 59% (n = 644) of patients had balanced alignment, 16% (n = 174) had a PI-LL > 10°, and 4% (n = 46) had a PI-LL > 20° (severe flatback deformity). The prevalence of hyperlordosis was 25% (n = 270). Flatback patients tended to be older than balanced and hyperlordotic patients (69.5 vs 64.0 vs 60.8 years, P < .001). Spinopelvic tilt was more posterior in flatback compared to balanced and hyperlordotic patients (24.7° vs 15.4° vs 7.0°) as was anterior pelvic plane tilt (-7.1° vs -2.0° vs 2.5°) and PI (64.1° vs 56.8° vs 49.0°), all P < .001.

Conclusion: Only 59% of patients undergoing THA have normally aligned lumbar spines. Flatback SSD was observed in 16% (4% with severe flatback deformity) and there was a 25% prevalence of hyperlordosis. Lumbar flatback was associated with increasing age, posterior pelvic tilt, and larger PI. The relatively high prevalence of spinal deformity in this population reinforces the importance of considering spinopelvic alignment in THA planning and risk stratification.

Keywords: dislocation; pelvic tilt; spinal deformity; spinopelvic alignment; surgery; total hip arthroplasty.