Unstable Lumbar Spine Osteomyelitis Caused by Trans-Foraminal Migration of Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band Connection Tubing: A Case Report

Jocelyn Compton, John Yanik, Nathan Hendrickson, Naina Bagrodia, Peter Nau, Andrew J Pugley
Iowa Orthopaedic Journal 2020, 40 (1): 101-103

Background: Disconnection of the tubing between the port and LAGB is a well-known complication in general surgery and accounts for up to 17% of LAGB complications. Typically, when this complication occurs patients present with abdominal or pelvic complaints. A complication of spinal infection due to trans-foraminal migration has not been previously reported. The aim of this study is to highlight an unusual infection of the thoracolumbar spine due to laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB) intragastric erosion, and migration into the lumbar spine causing epidural abscesses, discitis, and osteomyelitis. This case underscores the importance of a thorough surgical history, complete imaging, and multi-disciplinary approach in management of complex spine infections.

Methods: We report a case of LAGB tubing migration into the spinal canal through the left L2/L3 neural foramen resulting in symptomatic epidural abscesses and osteomyelitis.

Results: Although dislodgement and migration of LAGB tubing has been reported previously, this is the first report of trans-foraminal migration and erosion of lumbar vertebrae, causing osteomyelitis of the spine and epidural abscess formation, subsequent instability and neurologic deficit requiring urgent operative intervention.

Conclusions: Dislodgement and migration of LAGB tubing is a known complication. While it most commonly leads to abdominal and pelvic sequelae, in rare circumstances it may acutely affect the spine. Careful history, imaging, and multidisciplinary approach are paramount for the successful management. Level of Evidence: V .

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