Spine surgeon specialty differences in single-level percutaneous kyphoplasty

Hu, Kejia; Liu, Motao; Wang, Amy J.; Zhao, Gexin; Sun, Yuhao; Yang, Chaoqun; Zhang, Yiwang; Hutter, Matthew M.; Feng, Dehong; Sun, Bomin; Williams, Ziv

Percutaneous kyphoplasty (PKP) is a procedure performed by a spine surgeon who undergoes either orthopedic or neurosurgical training. The relationship between short-term adverse outcomes and spine specialty is presently unknown. To compare short-term adverse outcomes of single-level PKP when performed by neurosurgeons and orthopedic surgeons in order to develop more concretely preventive strategies for patients under consideration for single-level PKP.

We evaluated patients who underwent single-level PKP from 2012 to 2014 through the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP). We used univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression to assess the association between spine surgeon specialty and short-term adverse events, including postoperative complication and unplanned readmission, and to identify different independent risk predictors between two specialties.

Of 2248 patients who underwent single-level PKP procedure, 1229 patients (54.7%) had their operations completed by a neurosurgeon. There were no significant differences in the development of the majority of postoperative complications and the occurrence of unplanned readmission between the neurosurgical cohort (NC) and the orthopedic cohort (OC). A difference in the postoperative blood transfusion rate (0.7% NS vs. 1.7% OC, P = 0.039) was noted and may due to the differences in comorbidities between patients. Multivariate regression analysis revealed different independent predictors of postoperative adverse events for the two spine specialties.

By comparing a large range of demographic feature, preoperative comorbidities, and intraoperative factors, we find that short-term adverse events in single-level PKP patients does not affect by spine surgeon specialty, except that the OC had higher postoperative blood transfusion rate. In addition, the different perioperative predictors of postoperative complications and unplanned readmissions were identified between the two specialties. These findings can lead to better evidence-based patient counseling and provide valuable information for medical evaluation and potentially devise methods to reduce patients’ risk.


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September 22, 2023


Percutaneous kyphoplasty, Surgeon specialty, Postoperative complications, Unplanned readmission, Risk predictors, ACS NSQIP