The prevalence of major coronal and sagittal spinal curves (scoliosis and kyphosis) in Turner syndrome (TS) is not well established due to limited reporting. The relationship between growth hormone (GH) therapy and its effect on TS spinal curve incidence is also not well established.
A retrospective chart review of 306 TS patients from 2007 to 2021 evaluated major coronal and sagittal spinal curves, progression of the curve, and treatment with GH. Statistical significance (defined as P <0.05) between curvature rates and curve progression was compared between GH-treated patients and non–GH-treated patients using a χ2 or Fisher exact test when appropriate.
Thirty-seven of 306 (12%) TS patients had a radiographically relevant spinal deformity. Twenty-seven of 37 (73%) had mild; 4 of 37 (11%) had moderate, and 6 of 37 (16%) had severe curves. Of those with severe, 4 underwent spinal fusion, 1 was treated with bracing, and 1 was braced before a cardiovascular-related death. Regarding GH use among TS patients, 190 of 306 (62%) used GH versus 116 of 306 (38%) who did not. Of those with a spinal curve, 24 of 37 (65%) used GH compared with 13 of 37 (35%) who did not. On univariate analysis, GH therapy was not a risk factor for the diagnosis of a major spinal curve, a more severe degree of the curve at the time of diagnosis, or spinal curve progression (P >0.05 for all).
This is the largest single institution retrospective review of a TS cohort known to the authors assessing spinal curve prevalence and relation to GH treatment and demonstrates a TS spinal curve rate of 12% (37/306). Four of six (11%) TS patients with a severe curve underwent corrective spine fusion. There was no relationship between the use of GH and the presence of a spinal curve or curve progression. Further study is warranted to determine risk factors for curve progression.
Level of Evidence:
This retrospective case series serves to review and address the prevalence of spinal deformity in TS patients and whether GH impacts worsening deformity.