Because of the impossibility to perform a fusion, the minimally invasive percutaneous stabilization has been limited to relatively stable vertebral fractures, involving mainly bone component with a consistent possibility Deltarasin? of spontaneous healing after immobilization; the screws and rods implanted acted as an internal fixator, leading to the biological healing of all fractures. Wang et al. comparing two groups of patients with thoracolumbar burst fractures, one treated by instrumented fusion, while the other just fixed without fusion, showed that there were no statistically significant differences in the long term between the two groups with a slight advantage, both for clinical than for radiographic parameters, for the group treated only with fixation without fusion .
This study further justifies the minimally invasive approach we have taken. PMMA injection through fenestrated cannulated screws provided additional stability in fixation procedures carried out on osteoporotic vertebral columns without affecting fracture healing. Implant removal remains a controversial key point against this technique as it requires a second surgery and a general anesthesia, adding risks for the patient and costs for the hospital. Nevertheless, the real need for implant removal is probably much lower than that showed in our study as most of the patients who had the implant removed showed no clinical or radiological complications at the time of second surgery. Further studies are required to determinate the real need for hardware removal.
The loss of correction, we observed during the followup for the cases treated with multiaxial screws could be explained by the possibility of this type of screws to have slight movement, also after implantation, between the head and the arm of the screw. For this reason, monoaxial screws should be considered for this kind of surgery, when it is possible. There are yet no studies that analyze the complications of MIS in thoracic and lumbar spine fractures. A retrospective study compares two groups of patients treated by MIS (10 patients) and arthrodesis with conventional technique (11 patients), with a minimum followup of 5 years. There is evidence of reduced blood loss for the group treated with MIS, but the study did not consider the complications occurred .
The complications in our series are comparable to those reported in the literature for conservative treatment, and much less than with open fusion. 6. Conclusion MIS in the treatment of thoracolumbar Cilengitide and lumbar spine fractures represents a good alternative option to conservative treatment. Clinical and functional results are better or comparable, time of recovery is much quicker and the rate of complications is low. Implants need to be removed in case of complications or symptoms referred by the patient.