Study Design: Retrospective multicenter study. Objectives: To evaluate the surgical outcomes of cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) in diabetes mellitus (DM) patients. Methods: Approximately 253 cervical OPLL patients who underwent surgical decompression with or without fixation were registered at 4 institutions in 3 Asian countries. They were followed up for at least 2 years. Demographics, imaging, and surgical information were collected, and cervical Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) scores and the visual analog scale (VAS) for the neck were used for evaluation. Results: Forty-seven patients had DM, showing higher hypertension and cardiovascular disease prevalence. Although they presented worse preoperative JOA scores than non-DM patients (10.5 ± 3.1 vs. 11.8 ± 3.2; P = 0.01), the former showed comparable neurologic recovery at the final follow-up (13.9 ± 2.9 vs. 14.2 ± 2.6; P = 0.41). No correlation was noted between the hemoglobin A1c level in the DM group and the pre- and postoperative JOA scores. No significant difference was noted in VAS scores between the groups at pre- and postsurgery. Regarding perioperative complications, DM patients presented a higher C5 palsy frequency (14.9% vs. 5.8%; P = 0.04). A similar trend was observed when surgical procedure was limited to laminoplasty. Conclusions: This is the first multicenter Asian study to evaluate the impact of DM on cervical OPLL patients. Surgical results were favorable even in DM cases, regardless of preoperative hemoglobin A1c levels or operative procedures. However, caution is warranted for the occurrence of C5 palsy after surgery.
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