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[The effect of complications on the quality of life after surgery for lumbar spine degenerative disease]

PURPOSE OF THE STUDY: To evaluate the effect of complications on the quality of life in patients after elective stabilisation surgery on the lumbar spine. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between January 2005 and June 2007, 208 patients (120 women and 88 men) were included in the prospective study carried out at our department. These patients were undergoing elective surgery for lumbar spinal disease, namely, central and lateral stenosis, degenerative disc disease and degenerative and isthmic spondylolisthesis. All patients were treated by transpedicular fixation and fusion involving transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) in 165 patients, anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) in five and posterolateral fusion (PLF) in 38 patients. Satisfaction of the patients with surgery outcomes was assessed on a three-point scale, using the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS), and the Short Form health survey questionnaire (SF-36v2) for life quality evaluation. The follow-up period ranged from 6 months to 2 years. The results were statistically analysed using the chi-square test and t-test. RESULTS: A total of 30 complications were recorded in 28 patients (13.5 %). Revision surgery was necessary in 18 patients (8.7%). Pedicle screw misplacement was found in eight patients and permanent neurological deficit with paresis of the unilateral lower limb in three patients. Carbon cage break-down during surgery occurred in one patient, misinsertion of the cage was in one patient. The dural sac was damaged in five patients, superficial and deep wound infection was found in four and two patients, respectively. Broken screws were detected in seven patients. Donor-site pain persisted in two patients. The patients free from complications were more satisfied (partial or full satisfaction in 86%) than the patients with complications, who reported satisfaction in 78%. However, the difference was not statistically significant. The complications had no significant effect on either any of the SF-36v2 health domains or the total physical and mental score or pain intensity. The ALIF procedure was associated with no complications, PLF with three (13%) and TLIF with 23 (14%) complications, but the differences were not statistically significant. DISCUSSION: Complications and revision surgery were relatively frequent in our group, but not excessive compared with the published data which report their occurrence from 3% to 30%. This large range is related to an ambiguous definition and specification of complications. A significantly fewer complications have been reported in the studies supported by companies, or in those in which the author/s participate in instrumentation development. Some studies suggest that novel and more complex techniques bring about a higher risk of complications and repeat surgery, others report better results and fewer reoperations following a 360-degree fusion than after PLF. The difference in complications between TLIP and PLF in our group was not significant. CONCLUSIONS: Complications are a serious issue of spinal surgery. The majority of complications in our group were associated instrumentation–most frequently with incorrect screw misinsertion. On the whole, the complications did not significantly influence the quality of life and pain intensity after surgery. Most of them were treated successfully with no permanent consequences. The permanent neurological deficit in three patients, because of the small number, had no effect on the whole group results. A reduction in the number of complications would not produce any expected improvement of functional out- come

Keywords : Adult,adverse effects,Aged,Carbon,complications,Female,Humans,instrumentation,Lumbar Vertebrae,Male,methods,Middle Aged,Pain,Postoperative Complications,Prospective Studies,Quality of Life,Reoperation,Spinal Diseases,Spinal Fusion,Spine,Spondylolisthesis,surgery,Wound Infection,, Effect,Complications, fibromyalgia clinic

Date of Publication : 2010 Apr

Authors : Juricek M;Rehak L;Tisovsky P;Horvath J;

Organisation : Ortopedicko-traumatologicke oddeleni Nemocnice Havlickuv Brod. martin-juricek@hotmail.com

Journal of Publication : Acta Chir Orthop Traumatol Cech

Pubmed Link : https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20447353

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