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JOURNAL OF NEUROSURGICAL SCIENCES
A Journal on Neurosurgery
Indexed/Abstracted in: e-psyche, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Neuroscience Citation Index, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,651
Journal of Neurosurgical Sciences 1998 December;42(4):213-9
Tuberculous spondylitis: a retrospective study on a series of 12 patients operated on in a 25-year period
Rychlicki F. 1, Messori A. 1, Recchioni M. A. 1, Morici D. 2, Dobran M. 1, Pauri F. 1, Ducati A. 1, Papo I. 1
1 Clinic of Neurosurgery, University of Ancona, Italy;
2 Department of Orthopaedics, University of Ancona, Italy
Background. The incidence of tuberculous spondylitis, which had declined steadily for over 40 years in our countries, started increasing again in the eighties, paralleling the resurgence of pulmonary tuberculosis. Therefore it has become a matter of discussion in contemporary literature, because it can be a diagnostic challenge and, in spite of its severe neurological complications, it is a potentially curable illness.
Methods. In this retrospective study the authors report their experience concerning 12 patients operated on in a 25-year period because of serious cord compression from thoracic (9 cases) and cervical (1 case) tuberculous spondylitis or from thoracic tubercular epidural lesion (2 cases). Surgical techniques were selected on the basis of the cause of cord compression. Fusion with autologous bone and metallic osteosynthesis was performed in the cervical case (1986); no other patient received spinal instrumentation, and this can be explained with the consideration that all but one cases of Pott’s paraplegia were treated in the years 1968-1977. In all of these cases fusion was achieved by means of plaster jackets and prolonged bed rest. Prolonged chemotherapy was systematically administered.
Results. Follow-up data collected in 1995 show good and long-lasting results.
Conclusions. They conclude that surgical treatment is required in case of cord compression and results can be excellent even in presence of severe neurological impairment; spinal instrumentation available in our era should be now considered in order to make rehabilitation earlier and morphologic results more satisfactory.