Study design: A retrospective consecutive case series of adult spinal cord injuries (SCIs) patients. Objective: To assess the incidence and risk factors of spinal deformity in a large sample of patients with SCIs. Summary of background data: Post-traumatic spinal deformities are well-recognized sequelae of SCIs. Despite the devastating complications for SCI patients with trunk imbalance, the incidence, clinical outcomes, and independent risk factors of scoliosis after SCI remain controversial. Materials and methods: We assessed 214 consecutive adult compressive SCI patients who were hospitalized in our hospital. We compared patients who developed spinal deformities with those who did not. Univariate and multivariate analyses to determine the independent risk factors were performed. Age, gender, etiology, ASIA grade (American Spinal Injury Association) surgery, and other demographic data were analyzed to determine the risk factors for developing a spinal deformity. Results: The average patient age was 58.3 years (20–86 years). The etiology was trauma (n = 158), ossification of ligament (n = 22), infectious (n = 17), and others. One hundred fifty-two patients had cervical spine involved, 62 had thoracic spine involved. 26 patients classified as ASIA A, 54 were ASIA B, 96 were ASIA C, and 42 were ASIA D 4. One hundred thirty-five patients had either decompression or decompression and fusion surgery. The incidence of spinal deformities was 21 % (44/214). The mean Cobb angle was 28.9 degrees (13–38°). ASIA grade and surgery predicted the occurrence of spinal deformity in both the univariate model (ASIA grade, OR: 1.59 [95 % CI: 1.04–2.44; P = 0.032]; Surgery, OR: 4.47 [95 % CI: 1.89–10.06; P = 0.0007]) and the multivariate model (ASIA grade, OR: 1.63 [95 % CI: 1.04–2.57; P = 0.033]; Surgery, OR: 4.59 [95 % CI: 1.91–11.04; P = 0.0006]), whereas surgery was the most important risk factor in the Cox model (HR: 3.50 [95 % CI: 1.56–7.88; P = 0.0025]). Conclusions: The SCI patients with high ASIA grades and those who had undergone surgery had a higher likelihood of developing a spinal deformity. Of these risk factors, surgery was the stronger risk factor.
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