Frederik Hahn, Dominik Hauser, Norman Espinosa, Stefan Blumenthal, Kan Min


February 2008, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 255 - 261 Original Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-007-0558-9

First Online: 04 December 2007

This report describes the spinal fixation with pedicle-screw-alone constructs for the posterior correction of scoliosis in patients suffering from Duchene muscular dystrophy (DMD). Twenty consecutive patients were prospectively followed up for an average of 5.2 years (min 2 years). All patients were instrumented from T3/T4 to the pelvis. Pelvic fixation was done with iliac screws similar to Galveston technique. The combination of L5 pedicle screws and iliac screws provided a stable caudal foundation. An average of 16 pedicle screws was used per patient. The mean total blood loss was 3.7 l, stay at the intensive care unit was 77 h and hospital stay was 19 days. Rigid stabilisation allowed immediate mobilisation of the patient in the wheel chair. Cobb angle improved 77% from 44° to 10°, pelvic tilt improved 65% from 14° to 3°. Lumbar lordosis improved significantly from 20° to 49°, thoracic kyphosis remained unchanged. No problems related to iliac fixation, no pseudarthrosis or implant failures were observed. The average percentage of predicted forced vital capacity (%FVC) of the patients was 55% (22–94%) preoperatively and decreased to 44% at the last follow-up. There were no pulmonary complications. One patient with a known cardiomyopathy died intraoperatively due to a sudden cardiac arrest. The rigid primary stability with pedicle screws allowed early mobilisation of the patients, which helped to avoid pulmonary complications.


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