Complex Spinal Dorso-Ventral Stabilization in the Elderly – Is Age a Limiting Factor? Retrospective Case Series of 53 patients

Complex Spinal Dorso-Ventral Stabilization in the Elderly – Is Age a Limiting Factor? Retrospective Case Series of 53 patients

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Corresponding Author
Christian Ewelt
Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospital Münster, Germany

A B S T R A C T

Objective: Medical progress is increasingly confronting us with the question of whether complex surgical spinal care can be performed safely, even in older patients. This study is intended to contribute to the clarification of this question. Methods: 53 patients with a minimum age of 70 years at time of surgery were retrospectively enrolled in a single center setting. All patients were treated with complex dorsoventral instrumentation and corpectomy due to different pathologies. Because of neurological deficits and untreatable pain, no control group of patients could be defined in advanced age by withholding necessary surgery. The ethical committee would not accept this. Results: Most patients benefited from the procedure with regard to pain (97%), sensori-motor deficit (89%), and finally, immobility (82%). The duration of surgery, the amount of transfused red blood cell concentrates, and the length of hospital stay were not predictors of a poor overall outcome. It was shown that the risk of postoperative complications increased due to the number of preoperative secondary diagnoses. Conclusion: Therefore, not the patients’ age alone is of prime importance for individual surgical treatment decisions, but the number of secondary diagnoses plays a more important role. Especially in that older population, patients benefit from surgical therapy; regardless, it could be complex.

Article Info

Article Type
Research Article
Publication history
Received: Sat 21, Nov 2020
Accepted: Mon 07, Dec 2020
Published: Thu 24, Dec 2020
Copyright
© 2021 Christian Ewelt. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Hosting by Science Repository. All rights reserved.
DOI: 10.31487/j.SCR.2020.12.13