Original Articles: PDF OnlyAnterior Cortical Allograft in Thoracolumbar FracturesFinkelstein, Joel A.; Chapman, Jens R.*; Mirza, Sohail*Author Information *Division of Orthopedic Surgery, Sunnybrook Health Science Center, and The University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada; and School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, U.S.A. Received November 11, 1998; accepted February 22, 1999. Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. J. A. Finkelstein, Sunnybrook Health Science Center, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Room MG361, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4N 3M5. Results of this article have been presented in part at the Canadian Orthopedic Association Meeting in Hamilton, Ontario, May 1997. Journal of Spinal Disorders: October 1999 - Volume 12 - Issue 5 - p 424-429 Buy Abstract Summary: A prospective cohort study of consecutive patients with thoracolumbar fractures from two centers was conducted to evaluate the use of cortical allograft for anterior spine reconstruction. The purpose was to determine whether allograft bone had deleterious effects on fusion rates and maintenance of correction. Thirty-six patients were followed for a minimum of 2 years. A radiologic fusion rate of 81% was found, and there was a loss of postoperative correction in eight patients. The addition of posterior instrumentation was not significantly different from anterior surgery alone with respect to union rates but did provide a more reliable maintenance of correction of deformity. There were no cases of disease transmission. The authors conclude that cortical allograft for anterior spine reconstruction in trauma is safe and despite having a fusion rate lower than autogenous iliac crest, little clinical significance is attributable to the radiologic appearance of nonunion at the host-allograft junctions. © 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.