Article Abstract

Predicting critical care unit-level complications after long-segment fusion procedures for adult spinal deformity

Authors: Rafael De la Garza-Ramos, Jonathan Nakhla, Yaroslav Gelfand, Murray Echt, Aleka N. Scoco, Merritt D. Kinon, Reza Yassari


Background: To identify predictive factors for critical care unit-level complications (CCU complication) after long-segment fusion procedures for adult spinal deformity (ASD).
Methods: The American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS-NSQIP) database [2010–2014] was reviewed. Only adult patients who underwent fusion of 7 or more spinal levels for ASD were included. CCU complications included intraoperative arrest/infarction, ventilation >48 hours, pulmonary embolism, renal failure requiring dialysis, cardiac arrest, myocardial infarction, unplanned intubation, septic shock, stroke, coma, or new neurological deficit. A stepwise multivariate regression was used to identify independent predictors of CCU complications.
Results: Among 826 patients, the rate of CCU complications was 6.4%. On multivariate regression analysis, dependent functional status (P=0.004), combined approach (P=0.023), age (P=0.044), diabetes (P=0.048), and surgery for over 8 hours (P=0.080) were significantly associated with complication development. A simple scoring system was developed to predict complications with 0 points for patients aged <50, 1 point for patients between 50–70, 2 points for patients 70 or over, 1 point for diabetes, 2 points dependent functional status, 1 point for combined approach, and 1 point for surgery over 8 hours. The rate of CCU complications was 0.7%, 3.2%, 9.0%, and 12.6% for patients with 0, 1, 2, and 3+ points, respectively (P<0.001).
Conclusions: The findings in this study suggest that older patients, patients with diabetes, patients who depend on others for activities of daily living, and patients who undergo combined approaches or surgery for over 8 hours may be at a significantly increased risk of developing a CCU-level complication after adult deformity surgery.