Combining Bilateral Magnetically Controlled Implants Inserted Parallel to the Spine With Rib to Pelvis Fixation: Surgical Technique and Early Results

Anna K Hell, Katharina Groenefeld, Konstantinos Tsaknakis, Lena Braunschweig, Heiko M Lorenz
Clinical Spine Surgery 2018, 31 (6): 239-246
Spine-based fixation of magnetically controlled lengthening devices has been successfully performed for children with early-onset scoliosis. However, spinal manipulation may lead to ossifications, stiffness, and autofusion as previously described. To avoid these problems, a surgical technique combining bilateral externally controlled magnetic device implantation with a rib cradle and pelvic hook fixation was introduced by us in 2011. By using a bilateral single-rib or double-rib cradle fixation and a pelvic hook, the magnetic device is percutaneously inserted. The spine corrects indirectly without further manipulation. In small rib diameter or severe osteoporosis, double-rib cradles are used. Our introduced technique enables modification of the rib vertebral angle, which may be beneficial in children with spinal muscular atrophy and rib-cage deformity. This nonrandomized prospective study describes 18 children with neuromuscular scoliosis treated first by this method. All patients followed the same protocol, with expansion procedures being performed 5 months after surgery and every 3 months thereafter. Clinical, radiologic, and complication data were analyzed, showing a significant reduction in scoliosis and pelvic obliquity and an increase in spinal length, which could be maintained over a follow-up period of 1.2 years. The overall complication rate was lower than previously described, with 8%, 2 of them requiring surgery.

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