George Sapkas, Stamatios Papadakis, Paul Katonis, Nikolaos Roidis, George Kontakis

August 1999, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 279 - 283 Original article Read Full Article 10.1007/s005860050174

First Online: 05 August 1999

The authors present their experience in the operative treatment of unstable lesions at the cervicothoracic junction. Ten patients, six men and four women, underwent operative procedures at the cervicothoracic junction (C7-T1) between 1990 and 1997. Six patients had sustained fracture-dislocations, three patients had metastases and one patient had a primary malignant lesion. All the patients had significant cervical pain and neurologic deficit. The spinal cord and nerves were decompressed in all cases. Posterior stabilization was accomplished using various types of implants including hooks, wires and rods. Anteriorly, the spine was stabilized with plates and screws. Partial or complete vertebrectomy was performed in five cases and a titanium cylinder or an iliac autograft replaced the vertebral body. Five patients were submitted to a posterior operation only, and the other five to bilateral procedures. In four of these a one-stage operation was performed and in the last case a two-stage procedure. The anatomic and biomechanical characteristics of the cervicothoracic junction require a precise pre-operative analysis of the local anatomy and the selection of the proper implants for anterior and posterior stabilization.

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