Current strategies in the management of spinal metastatic disease

V. Bartanusz, François Porchet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


The treatment of metastatic spinal cord compression is complex. The three treatment modalities that are currently applied (in a histologically non-specific manner) are surgery, radiotherapy and the administration of steroids. The development of new spinal instrumentations and surgical approaches considerably changed the extent of therapeutic options in this field. These new surgical techniques have made it possible to resect these tumours totally, with subsequent vertebral reconstruction and spinal stabilization. In this respect, it is important to clearly identify those patients who can benefit from such an extensive surgery. We present our management algorithm to help select patients for surgery and at the same time identifying those for whom primary non-surgical therapy would be indicated. The retrospective review of surgically treated patients in our department in the last four years reveals a meagre application of conventional guidelines for the selection of the appropriate operative approach in the surgical management of these patients. The reasons for this discrepancy are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalSwiss Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2003


  • Anterior approach
  • Dexamethasone
  • Laminectomy
  • Operative indications
  • Radiotherapy
  • Spinal metastasis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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