Long-term results of hemivertebra excision: How does the spine behave after the peak of puberty?



Early hemivertebra (HV) excision and posterior spinal fusion (PSF) is advocated as the treatment of choice in congenital kyphoscoliosis. We assessed global spinal balance and spinal deformity status once the pubertal peak has taken place, in children with a history of HV excision and PSF at age younger than 5 years.


Twenty-seven children with congenital kyphoscoliosis without co-existing proximal/distal congenital spinal abnormalities who underwent HV excision and PSF of ≤ 5 levels at age younger than 5 years and who had reached the peak of puberty at the last follow-up visit were evaluated.


Twenty-seven HV excision were performed. Mean age at surgery was 3 years and 2 months. A mean of 3.2 segments were fused. Imbalance of the trunk was observed in 80% of thoracic and 75% of thoracolumbar HV excision. No arthrodesis technique (4 cases) presented 100% of spine decompensation. All children younger than 2 years at the time of surgery developed spinal imbalance. Eighteen patients (67%) had global spine imbalance; 81% male population and 63% of the female population. Mean age at surgery was 3 years + 2 months. Mean age of the patients at the time of the study was 15 years + 5 months. Mean follow-up was 12 years + 3 months.


Many of these patients developed spinal imbalance and scoliosis worsened at the final follow-up. Early age at surgery, preoperative scoliosis severity, HV location, no arthrodesis technique, and the adding-on phenomenon may be involved.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests. No conflicts of interest or funding received during the conduct of this study. Funding: Not applicable.

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Design of study: LP, CAT. Consulting references: LP, CM, EG, RR, IAFW, ESB. Participation in draft manuscript: LP, MN, EG, ESB. Revise manuscript: CAT, RR, CM, IAFW, ESB, MN. Approved the final version of the paper: LP, CAT, RR, CM, IAFW, EG, ESB, MN.

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Correspondence to Piantoni Lucas.

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The study was approved by the hospital Institutional Review Board (IRB); because of the retrospective observational nature of the study, IRB waived the informed consent.

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Lucas, P., Tello, C.A., Remondino, R.G. et al. Long-term results of hemivertebra excision: How does the spine behave after the peak of puberty?. Spine Deform (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s43390-020-00198-y

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  • Hemivertebra excision
  • Congenital scoliosis
  • Pediatric spine
  • Spine surgery