Multicenter, prospective randomized study.
Evaluate the impact of weekly teriparatide (WT) and bone contact (BC) status of grafted bone in patients recovering from multi-level lumbar interbody fusion (M-LIF).
WT has been reported to significantly improve bone fusion following posterior or transforaminal interbody fusion in osteoporosis patients.
Patients older than 50 years and osteoporotic were recruited. We defined the fusion of 2 or more consecutive intervertebral levels as M-LIF. All patients were instrumented with pedicle, iliac, or S-2 alar iliac screws after transplanting cages and autogenous bone between vertebral bodies. After surgical indication for M-LIF, the subjects were randomly allocated to receive either subcutaneous WT from 1 week to 6 months postoperatively (WT arm, N = 50) or a bisphosphonate (BP; BP arm, N = 54). Blinded radiological evaluations were performed using computed tomography (CT). Evaluation of bone fusion was performed at the intervertebral disc located at the bottom of the fixed range. The degree of bone fusion was calculated as a score from 2 to 6 points, with 2 defined as complete fusion. Bone fusion rate was also compared at 6 months postoperatively based on BC status of the grafted bone on CT immediately after surgery.
Mean bone fusion score at 6 months postoperatively was 3.9 points in the WT group and 4.2 points in the BP group. The bone fusion rate at 6 months postoperatively tended to be higher in the WT group (46.8% vs. 32.7% in the BP group). The 6-month postoperative fusion rate of immediately postoperative of BC+ patients was significantly higher than that of BC- patients (47.4% vs. 9.5%).
In M-LIF, there were no significant differences in bone fusion score between WT- and BP-treated patients. In contrast, BC status immediately postoperatively had a major impact on 6-month bone fusion.