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Int Orthop. 1994;18(4):204-9.

Anterior decompression and fusion for cervical myeloradiculopathy secondary to ossification of the posterior ligament.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Fukui Medical School, Japan.


The authors reviewed 85 patients who had undergone anterior decompression and cervical fusion for myeloradiculopathy due to ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament. There were 72 males and 13 females; the average follow up was for 8.3 years. Sixteen patients (group I) underwent one vertebra subtotal spondylectomy with fusion, 58 (group II) two vertebra subtotal spondylectomy, and 11 (group III) three vertebra subtotal spondylectomy. Neurological recovery was assessed on the grading system of the Japanese Orthopaedic Association. The patients in group I had an average improvement of 75%, in group II 72% and in group III 23%. The severity of compromise of the spinal cord did not affect the postoperative improvement. Duration of disease, previous injury and advanced neurological symptoms all affected neurological recovery. Spondylectomy of at most two vertebrae, with fusion, is recommended for ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament. If there is more extensive involvement laminoplasty may be indicated.

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