Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion associated complications

Spine
Kostas N FountasJoe S Robinson

Abstract

Retrospective review study with literature review. The goal of our current study is to raise awareness on complications associated with anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and their early detection and proper management. It is known that ACDF constitutes one of the most commonly performed spinal procedures. Its outcome is quite satisfactory in the majority of cases. However, occasional complications can become troublesome, and in rare circumstances, catastrophic. Although there are several case reports describing such complications, their rate of occurrence is generally underreported, and data regarding their exact incidence in large clinical series are lacking. Meticulous knowledge of potential intraoperative and postoperative ACDF-related complications is of paramount importance so as to avoid them whenever possible, as well as to successfully and safely manage them when they are inevitable. In a retrospective study, 1015 patients undergoing first-time ACDF for cervical radiculopathy and/or myelopathy due to degenerative disc disease and/or cervical spondylosis were evaluated. A standard Smith-Robinson approach was used in all our patients, while an autologous or allograft was used, with or without a plate. Operati...Continue Reading

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