Impact of Instrumented Spinal Fusion on the Development of Vertebral Compression Fracture

Yen Chun Chiu, Tsung Ting Tsai, Shih Chieh Yang, Hung Shu Chen*, Yu Hsien Kao, Yuan Kun Tu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

11 Scopus citations


Instrumented spinal fusion has become one of the most common surgeries for patients with various spinal disorders. Only few studies have reported subsequent vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) after instrumented spinal fusion. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the risk of new VCFs in patients undergoing instrumented spinal fusion. We obtained claims data from the National Health Insurance Research Database of Taiwan and retrospectively reviewed 6949 patients with instrumented spinal fusion as the spinal fusion cohort. Control subjects were individually matched at a ratio of 10:1 with those of the spinal fusion cohort according to age, sex, and the index day. Comorbidities were classified as those existing before the index day, and these included diabetes mellitus, hypertension, osteoporosis, and cerebrovascular accident. The end of the follow-up period for the analyses was marked on the day new VCFs developed, enrolment in the National Health Insurance was terminated, on the day of death, or until the end of 2012. We used the Cox proportion hazards model to analyze the hazard ratio (HR) for developing new VCFs. Patients with instrumented spinal fusion were significantly more likely to develop new VCFs (1.87% vs.25%, HR: 8.56; P < 0.001). Female, elderly, and osteoporotic patients had a high incidence of new VCFs after spinal fusion. The HR for developing new VCFs after instrumented spinal fusion was higher in patients younger than 65 years than in those 65 years or older (HR: 10.61 vs 8.09). Male patients with instrumented spinal fusion also had a higher HR of developing new VCFs than female patients (men, HR: 26.42; women, HR: 7.53). In our retrospective cohort study, patients who had undergone instrumented spinal fusion surgery exhibited an increased risk of developing new VCFs. Particularly, the HR increased in young (age <65 years) and male patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere3455
JournalMedicine (United States)
Issue number17
StatePublished - 01 04 2016

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