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Perioperative complications and secondary retethering after pediatric tethered cord release surgery – Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

The article titled “Operative Complications and Long-Term Outcomes of Secondary Retethering in Pediatric Tethered Cord Release: The Largest Series to Date” discusses the surgical management and outcomes of tethered cord syndrome (TCS) in pediatric patients. TCS is characterized by various neurological, musculoskeletal, and urinary symptoms caused by traction on the spinal cord. The study evaluated the complications and long-term outcomes of secondary retethering in TCR surgeries at a tertiary children’s hospital. The findings showed that simple TCR surgeries had rare complications and low rates of secondary retethering, while complex TCR surgeries presented higher risks of complications and retethering. Modifiable risk factors, such as the use of the operative laser, were associated with secondary retethering in complex cases. This study contributes valuable insights into the surgical management of TCS in pediatric patients

Summarised by Mr Mo Akmal – Lead Spinal Surgeon
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CONCLUSIONS: This is the largest series to date examining postoperative complications and long-term secondary retethering in TCR surgery. Simple TCR surgeries demonstrated safety, rare complications, and low secondary retethering rates. Complex TCR surgeries presented higher risks of complications and secondary retethering. Modifiable risk factors such as operative laser use influenced secondary retethering in complex cases.

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J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2023 Aug 11:1-10. doi: 10.3171/2023.6.PEDS23259. Online ahead of print.ABSTRACTOBJECTIVE: Tethered cord syndrome refers to a constellation of symptoms characterized by neurological, musculoskeletal, and urinary symptoms, caused by traction on the spinal cord, which can be secondary to various etiologies. Surgical management of simple tethered cord etiologies (e.g., fatty filum) typically consists of,

J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2023 Aug 11:1-10. doi: 10.3171/2023.6.PEDS23259. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Tethered cord syndrome refers to a constellation of symptoms characterized by neurological, musculoskeletal, and urinary symptoms, caused by traction on the spinal cord, which can be secondary to various etiologies. Surgical management of simple tethered cord etiologies (e.g., fatty filum) typically consists of a single-level lumbar laminectomy, intradural exploration, and coagulation and sectioning of the filum. More complex etiologies such as lipomyelomeningoceles or scar formation after myelomeningocele repair involve complex dissection and dural reconstruction. The purpose of this study was to evaluate operative complications and long-term outcomes of secondary retethering related to pediatric tethered cord release (TCR) at a tertiary children’s hospital.

METHODS: Medical records of children who underwent surgery for TCR from July 2014 to March 2023 were retrospectively reviewed. Data collected included demographics, perioperative characteristics, surgical technique, and follow-up duration. Primary outcomes were 60-day postoperative complications and secondary retethering requiring repeat TCR surgery. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify risk factors associated with complications and secondary retethering.

RESULTS: A total of 363 TCR surgeries (146 simple, 217 complex) in 340 patients were identified. The mean follow-up was 442.8 ± 662.2 days for simple TCRs and 733.9 ± 750.3 days for complex TCRs. The adjusted 60-day complication-free survival rate was 96.3% (95% CI 91.3%-98.4%) for simple TCRs and 88.7% (95% CI 82.3%-91.4%) for complex TCRs. Lower weight, shorter surgical times, and intensive care unit admission were associated with complications for simple TCRs. Soft-tissue drains increased complications for complex TCRs. The secondary retethering rates were 1.4% for simple TCRs and 11.9% for complex TCRs. The 1-, 3-, and 5-year progression-free survival rates in complex cases were 94.7% (95% CI 89.1%-97.4%), 77.7% (95% CI 67.3%-85.3%), and 62.6% (95% CI 46.5%-75.1%), respectively. Multivariate analysis revealed that prior detethering (OR 8.15, 95% CI 2.33-28.50; p = 0.001) and use of the operative laser (OR 10.43, 95% CI 1.36-80.26; p = 0.024) were independently associated with secondary retethering in complex cases.

CONCLUSIONS: This is the largest series to date examining postoperative complications and long-term secondary retethering in TCR surgery. Simple TCR surgeries demonstrated safety, rare complications, and low secondary retethering rates. Complex TCR surgeries presented higher risks of complications and secondary retethering. Modifiable risk factors such as operative laser use influenced secondary retethering in complex cases.

PMID:37728397 | DOI:10.3171/2023.6.PEDS23259

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Perioperative complications and secondary retethering after pediatric tethered cord release surgery

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J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2023 Aug 11:1-10. doi: 10.3171/2023.6.PEDS23259. Online ahead of print.ABSTRACTOBJECTIVE: Tethered cord syndrome refers to a constellation of symptoms characterized by neurological, musculoskeletal, and urinary symptoms, caused by traction on the spinal cord, which can be secondary to various etiologies. Surgical management of simple tethered cord etiologies (e.g., fatty filum) typically consists of

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