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Effect of Spinal Shortening for Protection of Spinal Cord Function in Canines with Spinal Cord Angulation

Qiu-An Lu, Ying-Song Wang, Jing-Ming Xie, Tao Li, Zhi-Yue Shi, Zhi-Shan Du, Ying Zhang, Zhi Zhao, Ni Bi

Department of Orthopedics, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Kunming Medical University, Kunming, Yunnan, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2019; 25:9192-9199

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.919313

Available online:

Published: 2019-12-02

BACKGROUND: Posterior vertebral column resection (PVCR) has been widely used as a treatment for severe spinal deformity. By using the canine model of vertebral column resection, this study explored the effect of spinal shortening on blood flow and function of the spinal cord during spinal cord angulation.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The canine model of L1 vertebral column resection was constructed with the PVCR technique. The canines were divided into 5 groups according to the degree of shortening: the 0/4 group, the 1/4 group, the 2/4 group, the 3/4 group, and the control group. Spinal cord blood flow, neuroelectrophysiology, HE staining, nitric oxide, and endothelin-1 were measured during the procedure of vertebral column resection and spinal cord angulation.
RESULTS: The results showed that, in the 1/4 group and the 2/4 group, the blood flow of the spinal cord decreased by 16.5% and 10.6%, respectively, with no obvious damage in the spinal cord; in the 0/4 group and the 3/4 group, the blood flow decreased by 23.5% and 23.1%, respectively, with significant damage in the spinal cord.
CONCLUSIONS: When the spinal cord is shortened by 1/4 to 2/4, the tolerance of the spinal cord can increase and spinal cord injury resulting from angulation can be avoided. However, when the shortening reaches 3/4, it is harmful to the spinal cord. Proper shortening of the spinal cord by 1/4 to 2/4 may increase the tolerance of the spinal cord to the damage caused by angulation during PVCR.

Keywords: Regional Blood Flow, Spinal Cord, Spinal Cord Ischemia