OBJECTIVE: Pyogenic spondylodiscitis (PS) is a non-specific infection affecting intervertebral disks and adjacent vertebral bodies. Once considered a rare condition in developed countries, the incidence of PS has been increasing alarmingly and still represents a challenge for clinicians and orthopedic surgeons. New minimally invasive techniques have been proposed but the proper indications for these different approaches remain controversial. The aim of this study was to describe the available minimally invasive surgical techniques and to evaluate their proper indications through a review of recent literature.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Over 30 articles of recent scientific literature have been reviewed and analyzed. Studies were searched through the PubMed database using the key words: spondylodiscitis, minimally invasive, and surgical treatment. The most interesting and valid techniques and results have been reported. Despite the exclusion of case reports, all the available studies have been conducted on small groups of patients. Indications for each technique have been reported according to a clinical-radiological classification of PS.
RESULTS: Six of the most widely used minimally invasive surgical techniques have been described. High success rates have been reported in terms of preventing the progression of spondylodiscitis into more destructive forms, reduction of time and operative hospitalization, faster pain relief, early mobilization, and achievement of microbiological diagnosis.
CONCLUSIONS: The role of minimally invasive surgery in the treatment of PS is rapidly expanding. Reducing surgery-related morbidity in these frail patients is possible and often necessary. However, while more and more new techniques are being proposed, still few clinical data are available. Clinical comparison studies with open traditional surgery should be encouraged, and more attention should be paid to long-term outcomes. For the present, the indications for minimally invasive procedures should, therefore, be evaluated on a case by case basis and on clinical and radiological findings.Free PDF Download
To cite this article
E. Pola, V. Pambianco, G. Autore, V. Cipolloni, M. Fantoni
Minimally invasive surgery for the treatment of thoraco lumbar pyogenic spondylodiscitis: indications and outcomes
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Vol. 23 - N. 2 Suppl