Does race impact surgical approach to spinal fusion for cervical spondylotic myelopathy? 5 key notes


A new study published in Spine examines the difference in treatment between races for cervical spondylotic myelopathy.

The study examines data from the nationwide inpatient sample from 2001 to 2010 for combined anterior and posterior fusion and decompression of the spinal canal including laminoplasty. The approaches include anterior-only, posterior-only or combined anterior-posterior.


The researchers found:


1. Non-white races, Hispanic, Pacific Islander and Native American patients were more likely to receive the posterior-only approach than white patients. Older patients were also more likely to undergo posterior-only spinal surgery.


2. Female patients and patients with private insurance were more likely to receive the anterior-only approach. Patients at a nontrauma center were also more likely to receive anterior-only surgery.


3. Hispanic race was predictive of increased combined anterior-posterior approach while the Native American race decreased the likelihood of a combined approach.


4. Recent literature demonstrates the posterior-only approach is associated with increased mortality among cervical spondylotic myelopathy patients.


5. The researchers found that cervical spondylotic myelopathy patients who aren't white may have an increased mortality risk while patients with private insurance have a decreased mortality risk.


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