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Surgical Management of Thoracolumbar Spine Fractures with Incomplete Neurologic Deficits

BRADFORD, DAVID, S.*; MCBRIDE, G., GRADY**

Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research: May 1987 - Volume 218 - Issue - p 201–216
Section II GENERAL ORTHOPAEDICS: PDF Only
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The results of surgical decompression (SD) in 59 patients with neurologic deficits secondary to thoracic or lumbar fractures were evaluated at a mean of 3.7 years after injury. The purpose was to determine whether SD could be correlated with subsequent neurologic outcome. Follow-up neurologic evaluations showed a greater neurologic improvement in the 20 patients who were treated with anterior spinal SD as compared to the 39 patients who received posterior or lateral SD (88% vs. 64%). The return of normal bowel and bladder control also occurred more frequently in the anteriorly SD group than the posteriorly treated SD group (69% vs. 33%). The inferior results in the posteriorly treated SD group appeared to correlate with a high incidence of bony stenosis as measured on postoperative computed axial tomography.

From the Twin Cities Scoliosis Center, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.