QUICK READ: Delay in Adult Spinal Surgery Predicts Poorer Outcomes

Posted Jun 7, 2023 under:

Only have a couple minutes to catch up on the latest news?

Catch up the newest studies and research with SCA Health Quick Reads.

Doctor looking at MRI of spinal cord.

Delaying Spinal Surgery

New information reveals that adults who choose, or are forced, to delay elective multi-level fusion for adult spinal deformity leads to reduced positive outcomes.

Read Time: 1 minute 30 seconds

What Is It?: An April 11th article from the Mayo Clinic highlights a 2022 post from Global Spine Journal. The results found that a need to delay elective multilevel fusion for adult spinal deformity (ASD) leads to poorer patient outcomes.

The Data:

  • According to the article, patients who experienced a delay in spine surgery had a 7x higher mortality rate (3.5% vs 0.5%) than those who did not.
  • “In this study, the investigators performed an American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Project (ACS-NSQIP) database retrospective review of 10,071 patients undergoing elective, greater-than-seven-level ASD spinal instrumentation between 2005 and 2015.”
  • Patients who had a delay saw increases in postoperative complications (44.4%) compared to those who did not (19.1%).

Why Delay Care?: Arjun S. Sebastian, M.D. describes that patients with “severe systematic disease” may delay rehabilitating any modifiable risk factors. Other independent risk factors, such as smoking, increase risk and may necessitate a delay.

The Results: Results show that patients who delay spine surgery care or experience a delay due to increased risk factors are at a substantially higher risk of post-op complications and potential mortality. Therefore, patients needing this procedure should actively reduce their risk factors and seek care to ensure a positive patient outcome.


Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/medical-professionals/orthopedic-surgery/news/delay-in-adult-spinal-deformity-surgery-associated-with-poorer-outcomes/mac-20546025

Sage Journals: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/2192568220954395#bibr9-2192568220954395

A new way to think about Health Care

Create a next level experience for outpatients with modern facilities, high quality of care.


Case Studies for the benefits of an integrated system