Degenerative lumbar scoliosis: features and surgical treatment
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Degenerative lumbar scoliosis is a de novo deformity of the spine occurring after the fourth or fifth decade of life in patients with no history of scoliosis in the growing age. We evaluated complications and functional and radiographic outcomes of twelve patients with degenerative lumbar scoliosis, treated by spinal decompression associated with posterolateral and/or interbody fusion. Mean lumbar scoliosis angle was 18° (SD=4°) and mean age at surgery was 57 years (SD=6 years). Average follow–up was 3.5 years. Surgical treatment consisted in decompression of one or more roots, associated with stabilization with pedicle screws and posterolateral fusion. To correct the deformity, the collapse of the disc was corrected by implanting a cage in the anterior interbody cage. Clinical symptoms and functional tolerance for daily activities improved after surgery. Radiographic evaluation showed a reduction in the deformity on the frontal and sagittal planes. There were no infections, evidence of pseudoarthrosis, instrumentrelated failures or re–operations in this series. In patients with persisting pain caused by degenerative scoliosis associated with spinal stenosis, in whom conservative treatment has failed, spinal decompression and segmented fusion with instrumentation represents a valid treatment option.