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The effect of age on the change in deformity after radical resection and anterior arthrodesis for tuberculosis of the spine
SS Upadhyay; MJ Saji; P Sell; AC Yau
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 1994 May 01;76(5):701-708
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We compared the long-term changes in spinal deformity after a radical operation for tuberculosis of the spine in thirty-three children who were ten years old or younger at the time of the operation with those of seventy-one adult patients who were at least eighteen years old at the time of the operation. The spinal deformity was measured with use of the angles of kyphosis and deformity as assessed on lateral spinal radiographs made preoperatively and postoperatively at six months, one year, and five years and at the most recent follow-up evaluation (at a mean of fifteen years). We detected no significant difference in the mean angles of kyphosis and deformity between the children and the adults postoperatively at any follow-up evaluation; thus, we found that growth of the posterior portion of the spine does not contribute to the progression of deformity after a radical anterior procedure. The children who had tuberculosis of the thoracic spine had much better correction than the adults at the six-month follow-up examination. This correction was maintained. However, there were no such differences in the correction of the deformity between the adults and the children who had tuberculosis of the thoracolumbar or the lumbar spine. Our findings clearly show that a short anterior spinal arthrodesis done at an early age was not associated with progression of deformity during growth and development in our patients. The longitudinal pattern of changes in deformity was similar in the children and the adults, and there was no evidence of disproportionate posterior spinal growth contributing to the progression of deformity after anterior spinal arthrodesis.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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