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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 745-751

Comparative analysis of long-term outcome of anterior reconstruction in thoracic tuberculosis by direct anterior approach versus posterior approach

Department of Orthopaedics, Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Parel, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Manojkumar Gaddikeri
Department of Orthopaedics, Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Parel, Mumbai, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ajns.AJNS_519_20

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Study Design: Retrospective study. Aim: To retrospectively evaluate and compare the long-term outcome of anterior vertebral body reconstruction in tuberculosis (TB) of the dorsal spine by direct anterior-versus-posterior approach. Materials and Methods: A total of 127 patients operated by posterior approach, 118 by anterior for TB-thoracic spine with at least 1-year follow-up were included and retrospectively analyzed. Patients were assessed clinically, radiologically and data regarding age, sex, levels involved, surgical approach, operative time, blood loss, neurological recovery using Frankel grade, pre- and post-operative kyphosis, % correction of kyphosis, time for fusion, fusion grading using Bridwell criteria, % loss of correction, mobilization time and complications if any were collected, analyzed, compared in anterior-v/s-posterior approaches. Results: The mean age in anterior-approach was 36.03 and 39.83 years in posterior. Mean operative time in anterior-approach was 6.11 and 5 h in posterior. Mean blood loss of 1.6 L in anterior approach and 1.11 L in posterior. Mean preoperative kyphosis angle in posterior-approach was 34.803°and 11.286° (P < 0.001) at 3 months postopandtotal correction of 67.216%. Mean preoperative kyphosis angle in anterior-approach was 41.154° and 9.498° at 3 months postopandtotal correction of 77.467% (P < 0.001). Mean loss of correction at 1 year was 4.186°in posterior-approach and 6.184°in anterior. The mean time for fusion was 4.69 months in anterior-approach while 6.34 months in posterior as per Bridwell criteria. Meantime for mobilization in posterior-approach was 1.18 and 2.51 weeks in anterior. Significant improvement in neurology was seen in patients operated by either approach, slightly better in anterior. Complications were more in posterior-approach. Conclusions: Anterior-approach allows for thorough debridement, neural decompression, better anterior column reconstruction, and deformity correction under direct vision than posterior. Direct cord visualization while correcting kyphosis reduces the chances of neurological complications significantly. Both approaches have unique advantages and limitations. Though the posterior approach is easy to master, results shown by the anterior cannot be overseen. To conclude, better functional outcome and significantly better kyphosis correction are seen with anterior-approach, which are strong pointers favoring it.

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