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Asian Spine J. 2012 Dec;6(4):257-65. doi: 10.4184/asj.2012.6.4.257. Epub 2012 Dec 14.

Complications of posterior vertebral resection for spinal deformity.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedics, Seoul Spine Institute, Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital, Inje University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.



Retrospective study.


To evaluate the incidence and risk factors of complications following posterior vertebral resection (PVR) for spinal deformity.


A review of 233 patients treated with PVR at one institution over a nine-year period (1997 to 2005) was performed. The average age was 33.5 years. Complications were assessed in terms of surgical techniques (posterior vertebral column resection [PVCR] and decancellation osteotomy) and etiologies of deformity.


Local kyphosis was corrected from 51.4° to 2.7°, thoracic scoliosis 63.9° to 24.5° (62.6% correction), and thoracolumbar or lumbar scoliosis 50.1° to 17.1° (67.6%). The overall incidence of complications was 40.3%. There was no significant difference between PVCR and decancellation osteotomy in the incidence of complications. There were more complications in the older patients (>35 years) than the younger (p < 0.05). Hig her than 3,000 ml of blood loss and 200 minutes of operation time increased the incidence of complications, with significant difference (p < 0.05). More than 5 levels of fusion significantly increased the total number of complications and postoperative neurologic deficit (p < 0.05). Most of the postoperative paraplegia cases had preoperative neurologic deficit. Preoperative kyphosis, especially in tuberculous sequela, had hig her incidences of complications and postoperative neurologic deficit (p < 0.05). More than 40° of kyphosis correction had the tendency to increase complications and postoperative neurologic deficit without statistical significance (p > 0.05). There was 1 mortality case by heart failure. Revision surgery was performed in 15 patients for metal failure or progressing curve.


The overall incidence of complications of PVR was 40.3%. Older age, abundant blood loss, preoperative kyphosis, and long fusion were risk factors for complications.


Decancellation osteotomy; Posterior vertebral column resection; Posterior vertebral resection; Postoperative complications

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