Study design: Retrospective multicenter study. Objective: To compare the surgical outcomes and complications of posterior decompression between individuals with cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM) and those with ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL). Setting: Seventeen medical institutions in Japan. Methods: This study included 814 individuals with CSM (n = 636) and OPLL (n = 178) who underwent posterior decompression. Propensity score matching of the baseline characteristics was performed to compare surgical outcomes and perioperative complications between the CSM and OPLL groups. Results: Before propensity score matching, the OPLL group had higher percentage of male individuals, body mass index, and number of stenosis levels and longer duration of symptoms (P < 0.01, P < 0.01, P < 0.01, and P < 0.01, respectively). After matching, the baseline characteristics were comparable between the CSM (n = 98) and OPLL (n = 98) groups. The postoperative Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) scores, preoperative-to-postoperative changes in the JOA scores, and JOA score recovery rates were not significantly different between the groups (P = 0.42, P = 0.47, and P = 0.09, respectively). The postoperative visual analog scale (VAS) score for neck pain and preoperative-to-postoperative changes in the VAS score for neck pain were not significantly different between the groups (P = 0.25 and P = 0.50, respectively). The incidence of perioperative complications was comparable between groups. Conclusion: Neurological improvement and complication rates after surgery were comparable between individuals with CSM and those with OPLL, suggesting similar effectiveness and safety of posterior decompression for both conditions.
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