WE PRESENT THE surgical results of a laminoplasty with an extended foraminotomy for cervical myelopathy. We chose spinous process-splitting laminoplasty, because it gave us the opportunity to perform bilateral foraminotomies through the same exposure. An extended foraminotomy means that root decompression is performed as far laterally as possible, using the surgical microscope. We performed this method in 18 patients and experienced favorable clinical results. Neuroradiological evaluations revealed good decompression of the spinal cord postoperatively. Although the operation time needed was longer compared with the original method, the average blood loss was 430 ml and blood transfusion was necessary in five patients. This method can be considered when cervical myelopathy is treated by a posterior approach.
Department of Neurosurgery, Kohnan Hospital (KK) and Tohoku University School of Medicine (KK, TT, TY), Sendai, Japan
Reprint requests: Keiji Koshu, M.D., Department of Neurosurgery, Kohnan Hospital, 4-20-1 Nagamachi-minami, Taihaku-ku, Sendai 982, Japan.
Received, October 19, 1994. Accepted, March 20, 1995.