A new study published in Spine examines how recombinant bone morphogenetic protein affects children undergoing spinal fusion for scoliosis correction.
The researchers examined 72,898 children who underwent spinal fusion procedures according to the Nationwide Inpatient Sample. The data was gathered for patients under the age of 18 who underwent spinal fusion with or without rhBMP use between 2004 and 2010. There were 7.1 percent of the patients who had rhBMP.
The researchers found:
1. The complication rate was 14.34 percent overall, with a minor variation between the rhBMP patients and the non-rhBMP patients: 15.2 percent of the rhBMP patients experienced complications, compared to 14.3 percent of the non-rhBMP patients.
2. There was no statistically significant difference in the overall complication rate ratio between the two groups or among the 14 different complications measured.
3. The patients who underwent spinal fusion with rhBMP were more likely to report "other infections" when compared with the non-rhBMP group.
4. Over the past decade, rhBMP was used infrequently among pediatric spinal fusion patients despite the FDA approval.