Complications of the Variable Screw Plate Pedicle Screw Fixation.WEST, JAMES L. III MD; OGILVIE, JAMES W. MD; BRADFORD, DAVID S. MDSpine: May 1991 Original Article: PDF Only Abstract In this study, 124 consecutive cases of posterior spinal fusion with variable screw plate fixation were reviewed. In 33 patients (27%), 41 complications were identified. Urinary tract infection without sequelae developed in 13 patients. Dural tear occurred in seven patients and wound hematoma in five. Wound infection developed in three patients; one was subfascial requiring instrument and graft removal. Neurologic deficit developed in seven patients (6%), in five of whom the deficit was due to manipulation and reduction of neural elements. Two of the seven deficits were believed to be caused by misplaced pedicle screws. Variable screw plate fixation is a formidable procedure with a significant complications rate. (C) Lippincott-Raven Publishers.