Combined anterior-posterior surgery is the most important risk factor for developing proximal junctional kyphosis in idiopathic scoliosis

Han Jo Kim, Mitsuru Yagi, Joseph Nyugen, Matthew E. Cunningham, Oheneba Boachie-Adjei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

85 Citations (Scopus)


Background Several studies have identified risk factors for proximal junctional kyphosis (PJK) after instrumentation for scoliosis, but the relative risks are unclear. Questions/purposes We identified risk factors for PJK in idiopathic scoliosis and determined their relative risks in a predictive model. Methods We retrospectively reviewed the charts of all 249 patients with idiopathic scoliosis who underwent surgery from 1996 to 2008. We compared those who developed PJK to those who did not. We identified risk factors for PJK and performed univariate and multivariate analyses to determine independent risk factors. We then used a Cox proportional-hazards model to evaluate the time to the development of PJK. The minimum followup time was 1.5 years (mean, 4 years; range, 1.5-9 years). Results The incidence of PJK in our series of patients with idiopathic scoliosis was 17%. There was no difference in Scoliosis Research Society-22 scores between patients without and with junctional kyphosis. Independent risk factors included proximal fusion to T1 through T3 and sagittal sacral vertical line, while in the Cox model a combined anterior-posterior approach surgery was the most important risk factor. Conclusions Patients with a T1 through T3 upper instrumented level, combined anterior-posterior surgery, and increased sagittal sacral vertical line difference had a higher likelihood of developing PJK. Of these risk factors, anterior-posterior surgery was the strongest risk factor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1633-1639
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jun
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Cite this