Anterior versus posterior approach in 3D correction of adolescent idiopathic thoracic scoliosis: A meta-analysis

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Purpose: Systematic review was conducted to compare effectiveness and safety of anterior and posterior surgical approach in 3D correction of adolescent idiopathic thoracic scoliosis. Methods: Data sources were MEDLINE and SCOPUS databases. We included studies on the use of either anterior or posterior instrumentation, or their combination, in surgical correction of adolescent idiopathic thoracic scoliosis, with at least 10 enrolled patients, aged less than 20 years at the time of surgery, and a follow-up of at least 24 months. A study was eligible if it reported the number of patients, mean estimate and dispersion of three key outcome measures (frontal and sagittal Cobb angle, apical vertebra rotation according to Perdriolle) at three measurement points (preoperatively, postoperatively, at follow-up). The quality of studies was assessed using the scale by Pilkington. Results: Although 24 articles met the inclusion criteria, no randomized controlled trials (RCT) was identified. None of the articles was of high quality. Both instrumentations provided a similar degree of reduction of frontal Cobb angle. Long-term effects of surgical correction on the sagittal Cobb angle seemed to be more stable in patients treated by posterior approach, while the anterior approach was more effective in the reduction of apical vertebral rotation. The surgery parameters were more favorable for anterior approach, particularly for the number of fused vertebrae. Conclusions: Although the available evidence favors neither of the two approaches, our study revealed several important issues: the reports are heterogeneous and provide incomplete relevant information. High quality studies, particularly RCT, are called for. Level of evidence: Level II. © 2012.




Franic, M., Kujundzic Tiljak, M., Pozar, M., Romic, D., Mimica, M., Petrak, J., … Pecina, M. (2012). Anterior versus posterior approach in 3D correction of adolescent idiopathic thoracic scoliosis: A meta-analysis. Orthopaedics and Traumatology: Surgery and Research, 98(7), 795–802.

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