Acta Neurochirurgica

, Volume 159, Issue 9, pp 1783–1790 | Cite as

Ossification foci act as stabilizers in continuous-type ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament: a comparative study between laminectomy and laminoplasty

  • Sunjoon Yoo
  • Dalsung Ryu
  • Hong-June Choi
  • Sung-Uk Kuh
  • Dong-Kyu Chin
  • Keun-Su Kim
  • Yong-Eun ChoEmail author
Original Article - Spine



In multilevel ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL), laminectomy is an effective surgical technique; however, there is a possibility of kyphotic alignment change after surgery. Nevertheless, in the continuous type of OPLL, the ossification foci are connected and may act as stabilizers preventing alignment change. We here compare the surgical outcome of laminectomy and laminoplasty in continuous-type OPLL of the cervical spine.


Seventy-three patients who underwent cervical laminectomy or laminoplasty for continuous-type OPLL from 2004 to 2014 were enrolled. The clinical outcomes were assessed by using the neck disability index, visual analogue scale, and Japanese Orthopedic Association scoring systems. Radiological evaluation with plain lateral radiographs was performed to observe alignment changes.


The perioperative clinical outcome with laminectomy did not differ significantly from that of laminoplasty. Kyphotic change was observed in 3 of 35 patients with laminectomy and 3 of 38 patients with laminoplasty. Although loss of lordosis was observed in both groups, the C2–7 Cobb angle, sagittal vertical axis (SVA), and T1 slope did not demonstrate significant statistical differences between laminectomy and laminoplasty. Moreover, the C2–7 SVA in the C7-included laminectomy group (33.9 ± 13.4) became greater than that in the C7-excluded laminectomy group (24.8 ± 11.3) at the final follow-up (p = 0.049).


In continuous-type OPLL, the surgical outcome did not show any significant difference between laminectomy and laminoplasty. Laminectomy alone is also a good choice in continuous-type OPLL, similar to laminoplasty.


Ossification of posterior longitudinal ligament Laminectomy Laminoplasty Stabilizer 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest


Ethical approval

All procedures performed in this study were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. For this type study, formal consent is not required.


No funding was received for this research.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sunjoon Yoo
    • 1
  • Dalsung Ryu
    • 2
  • Hong-June Choi
    • 3
  • Sung-Uk Kuh
    • 1
  • Dong-Kyu Chin
    • 1
  • Keun-Su Kim
    • 1
  • Yong-Eun Cho
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Neurosurgery, Spine and Spinal Cord Institute, Gangnam Severance HospitalYonsei University College of MedicineSeoulRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Department of Neurosurgery, College of MedicineInha UniversityIncheonSouth Korea
  3. 3.Department of Neurosurgery, College of MedicineDong-A UniversityBusanSouth Korea

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