Single- versus dual-rod anterior instrumentation of thoracolumbar curves in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis

Mithun Nambiar, Yi Yang, Susan Liew, Peter L. Turner, Ian P. Torode

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Purpose: Single or dual-rod instrumentation can be used for the anterior fixation of the spine in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS). We aim to compare the complications, radiographic and functional outcomes of patients with AIS who have undergone single and dual-rod instrumentation. Methods: This is a multi-centre study involving the Royal Children’s, Royal Melbourne and Epworth hospitals. Three primary surgeons were involved to ensure homogeneity of surgical technique and implants. Patients with AIS and thoracolumbar curves (Lenke 5 and 6) undergoing anterior instrumentation from 1st January 2000 to 30th June 2013 were included. Radiographic data were collected from X-rays. The functional outcome was measured through the Scoliosis Research Society questionnaire (SRS-30). Results: The study included 58 patients (38 single-rod and 20 dual-rod patients). Thirty-nine patients were classified with Lenke 5 curves, while 19 patients had Lenke 6 curves. Structural interbody supports were used in 95 % of cases. In the preoperative to postoperative period, patients with single rods had an improvement of 75 and 51 % for primary and secondary curves, respectively, while patients with dual rods had an improvement of 70 and 38 % for primary and secondary curves, respectively. There were no cases of pseudoarthrosis or metalware failure in either group. Two patients (one single-rod and one dual-rod patient) required further unplanned posterior fusion. 91 % of patients were satisfied with the results of their back management. Conclusion: Pseudoarthrosis and metalware failure are rare complications of anterior instrumentation. Our study found no significant difference in functional or radiographic outcome between single and dual-rod instrumentation. Level of evidence: Level III

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3249-3255
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Spine Journal
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Anterior
  • Dual
  • Fusion
  • Scoliosis
  • Single

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