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Benefits of the Harrington Compression System in Lumbar and Thoracolumbar Idiopathic Scoliosis in Adolescents and Adults

GAINES, R W, MD*; LEATHERMAN, K D, MD

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Adolescent and adult scoliosis exhibits deformity present in all three planes of orientation, but the principal correcting effect of the Harrington distraction system is in the frontal plane. Sagittal and horizontal deformity was addressed by adding the compression system. Twenty patients were treated with combined apparatus. The mean preoperative frontal curve was 52º, and the mean postoperative curve was 16º. The average preoperative tilt angle was 31º, and the average postoperative angle was 8º. Thoracolumbar kyphosis was reduced, and lumbar lordosis was maintained. The combined apparatus addresses the triplanar curvature more effectively than the single distraction system.

*From the Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Missouri Medical Center, Columbia, MO.

†Director, Kosair Scoliosis & Spine Treatment Center, Louisville, KY

© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.