Spinal fusions to the sacrum in adults with scoliosis

John P. Kostuik, Brad B. Hall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

154 Scopus citations


Forty-five skeietaliy mature patients averaging 44.3 years of age had spinal fusions which extended to the sacrum for pain and/or progression of their scoliosis. The primary diagnosis was idiopathic scoliosis in 35 patients, congenital scoliosis in two patients, and paralytic scoliosis in eight patients. A single curve pattern was present in 41 patients and the remainder had double primary curves. Thirty-eight patients had single stage procedures and 35 of these were done posteriorly. There was an evolution in the type of posterior instrumentation used over the 12 years. Thirty-five patients (78%) had at least one significant postsurgical complication. Thirteen of 22 patients with loss of lordosis required corrective osteotomies. Other complications included pseudoarthrosis in ten patients and neurologic complications in five patients, four of which had complete recovery. Twenty-five patients required a total of 51 subsequent surgical procedures. Despite a 51 % initially poor result and a high complication rate, the final results were good or fair in 93% of the patients, This change was primarily the result of successful subsequent surgical procedures for correction of loss of lordosis and pseudoarthrosis. The adult scoliosis patient should be fused to the sacrum only if the lumbosacral disc is clearly a source of pain or the degree of pelvic obliquity makes it necessary in the paralytic curve. Every effort must be made to carefully preserve the patient's lumbar lordosis. Better results were obtained by using segmental spinal fixation in the form of sublaminar wiring of double Luque rods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)489-500
Number of pages12
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 1983
Externally publishedYes


  • Adult scoliosis
  • Fusion to sacrum
  • Instrumentation
  • Surgical correction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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