Comparison of postoperative outcomes in patients with and without osteoporosis undergoing single-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion

Alexander J. Kammien, Anoop R. Galivanche, Peter Y. Joo, Ali Elaydi, Peter Whang, Comron Saifi, Jonathan N. Grauer, Arya Varthi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Osteoporosis is ubiquitous in elderly populations, such as those undergoing ACDF. Short- and longer-term outcomes might be affected in the setting of osteoporosis related to graft subsidence, bony union, and stresses on adjacent segments. Better understanding the potential correlation of osteoporosis and outcomes after ACDF might affect patient counseling and surgical planning. The current study compares 90-day adverse events and 5-year reoperations following single-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) between patients with and without osteoporosis. Methods: Single-level ACDF procedures were identified in a national administrative database. Exclusion criteria included age under 18 years, less than 90 days of follow-up in the database, multi-level procedures, posterior concomitant procedures, and surgeries performed for trauma, neoplasm, or infection. After matching based on patient characteristics, 90-day perioperative adverse events were compared with multivariate analyses and five-year reoperations were compared with log-rank analysis. Reasons for reoperations were also evaluated. Results: Relative to age, sex, and comorbidity-matched patients without osteoporosis, those with osteoporosis had a small but statistically greater incidence of experiencing any 90-day adverse event (10.9% vs 9.4%, p < 0.001) and 5-year reoperations (19.1% vs 17.0%, p < 0.001). Of those requiring reoperation, those in the osteoporosis group had a greater proportion for nonunion (7.5% vs 5.6% p = 0.003). Conclusions: Following single-level ACDF, patients with osteoporosis experience slightly greater 90-day adverse events and 5-year reoperations. These results suggest the importance of recognizing osteoporosis in the ACDF population and accounting for this with surgical planning and patient counselling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100174
JournalNorth American Spine Society Journal
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • ACDF
  • Complications
  • Fusion
  • Nonunion
  • Osteoporosis
  • Reoperation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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