Hideyuki Arima, John R. Dimar II, Steven D. Glassman, Yu Yamato, Yukihiro Matsuyama, Jean-Marc Mac-Thiong, Pierre Roussouly, Brandon Cook, Leah Y. Carreon

November 2018, Volume 27, Issue 12, pp 2990 - 2998 Original Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-018-5743-5

First Online: 24 August 2018


Ethnic differences in spino-pelvic parameters among a healthy population are poorly defined in the literature. The purpose of this study was to document sagittal spino-pelvic parameters in a sample of African Americans and to compare them with previously reported data for Caucasians and Asians.


African American individuals without spine pathology who had standing lateral radiographs were identified. Radiographs were measured to determine the following parameters: lumbar lordosis (LL), pelvic incidence (PI), pelvic tilt (PT) and sacral slope (SS). Data of adult subjects were compared with those previously published for Caucasians (n = 709) and Asians (n = 312).


These measurements (LL, PI, PT, and SS) obtained for the 36 African American subjects aged 18 years or older [15 men and 21 women; mean age 26.6 ± 8.7 range (18–53)] The mean LL, PI, PT and SS values were 57.2°, 57.7°, 15.9° and 41.4°, respectively. A comparative analysis showed the means values for PI was greater in the African American than in Caucasian (57.7° vs. 52.6°, p = 0.007), and than in Asian (57.7° vs. 48.7°, p < 0.001). The linear regression model for the LL as a function of PI were “predict LL = 0.41 × PI + 33.7” in African American, “predict LL = 0.58 × PI + 24.3” in Caucasian, and “predict LL = 0.54 × PI + 22.0” in Asian, respectively.


Significant differences in sagittal spino-pelvic parameters among races were seen. These differences should be considered when planning surgical reconstruction for spinal surgery.

Graphical abstract

These slides can be retrieved under Electronic Supplementary Material.[Figure not available: see fulltext.]

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