Assessment of Patient Outcomes and Proximal Junctional Failure Rate of Adult Spinal Deformity Patients Undergoing Caudal Extension of Previous Spinal Fusion.

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World Neurosurg


OBJECT: This case series examined patients undergoing caudal extension of prior fusion without alteration of the prior UIV to assess patient outcomes and rates of PJK/PJF.

METHODS: Patients eligible for 2-year minimum follow-up undergoing caudal extension of prior fusion with unchanged UIVs were identified. These patients were evaluated for PJK/PJF, and patient reported outcomes were recorded.

RESULTS: In total, 40 patients were included. Mean follow-up duration was 2.2 years (SD 0.3). Patients in this cohort had poor preoperative sagittal alignment (PI-LL 26.7°, TPA 29.0°, SVA 93.4mm) and achieved substantial sagittal correction (ΔSVA -62.2mm, ΔPI-LL -19.8°, ΔTPA -11.1°) following caudal extension surgery. At final follow-up, there was a 0% rate of PJF among patients undergoing caudal extension of previous fusion without creation of a new UIV, but 27.5% of patients experienced PJK. Patients experienced significant improvement in both ODI and SRS-22r total score at 2-years post-operatively (p

CONCLUSIONS: Patients undergoing caudal extension of previous fusions for sagittal alignment correction have high rates of clinical success, low revision surgery rates, and very low rates of PJF. Minimizing repetitive tissue trauma at the UIV may result in decreased PJF risk, as the PJF rate in this cohort of unaltered UIV patients is below historical PJF rates of patients undergoing sagittal balance correction.

Clinical Institute

Orthopedics & Sports Medicine