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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Laminoplasty versus laminectomy for multi-level cervical spondylotic myelopathy: a systematic review of the literature

  • Author(s): Lao, Lifeng
  • Zhong, Guibin
  • Li, Xinfeng
  • Qian, Lie
  • Liu, Zude
  • et al.

Abstract Background There is considerable controversy as to which posterior technique is best for the treatment of multi-level cervical spondylotic myelopathy. The aim of this study was to compare the clinical and radiographic results and complications of laminoplasty (LAMP) and laminectomy (LAMT) in the treatment of multi-level cervical spondylotic myelopathy. Methods We reviewed and analyzed papers published from January 1966 and June 2013 regarding the comparison of LAMP and LAMT for multi-level cervical spondylotic myelopathy. Statistical comparisons were made when appropriate. Results Fifteen studies were included in this systematic review. There was no significant difference in the incidence of surgical complications between LAMP and LAMT. Compared to conventional LAMT and skip LAMT, postoperative ROM was more limited in LAMP, but this was still superior to postoperative ROM following LAMT with fusion. Postoperative kyphosis occurred in 8/180 (4.44%) in LAMP and 13/205 (6.34%) in LAMT, whereas no cases of kyphosis were reported for skip LAMT. Skip LAMT appears to have better clinical outcomes than LAMP, while the outcome was similar between LAMP and LAMT with fusion. Conclusions Based on these results, a claim of superiority for laminoplasty or laminectomy was not justified. In deciding between the two procedures, the risks of surgical and neurological complications, and radiologic and clinical outcome, must be taken into consideration if both options are available in multi-level cervical spondylotic myelopathy.

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