JOURNAL ARTICLE
MULTICENTER STUDY
REVIEW

C5 palsy after cervical laminoplasty: a multicentre study

S Imagama, Y Matsuyama, Y Yukawa, N Kawakami, M Kamiya, T Kanemura, N Ishiguro
Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. British Volume 2010, 92 (3): 393-400
20190311
We have reviewed 1858 patients who had undergone a cervical laminoplasty and identified 43 (2.3%) who had developed a C5 palsy with a MMT (MRC) grade of 0 to 2 in the deltoid, with or without involvement of the biceps, but with no loss of muscular strength in any other muscles. The clinical features and radiological findings of patients with (group P; 43 patients) and without (group C; 100 patients) C5 palsy were compared. CT scanning of group P revealed a significant narrowing of the intervertebral foramen of C5 (p < 0.005) and a larger superior articular process (p < 0.05). On MRI, the posterior shift of the spinal cord at C4-5 was significantly greater in group P, than in group C (p < 0.01). This study is the first to correlate impairment of the C5 nerve root with a C5 palsy. It may be that early foraminotomy in susceptible individuals and the avoidance of tethering of the cord by excessive laminoplasty may prevent a post-operative palsy of the C5 nerve root.

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