This was a retrospective comparative study.The objective of this study was to assess the effect of increased age on perioperative and postoperative complication rates, reoperation rates, and patient-reported pain and disability scores after lateral lumbar interbody fusion (LLIF).LLIF was developed to minimize soft tissue trauma and reduce the risk of vascular injury; however, there is little evidence regarding the effect of advanced age on outcomes of LLIF.Patients who underwent LLIF from 2009 to 2019 at one institution with a minimum 6-month follow-up were retrospectively reviewed. Patients less than 18 years old with musculoskeletal tumor or trauma were excluded. The primary outcome was the preoperative to postoperative change in the Numeric Pain Rating Scale (NPRS) for back pain. Operative time, estimated blood loss, length of stay, perioperative and 90-day complications, unplanned readmissions, reoperations, and change in Oswestry Disability Index were also evaluated. Relationships with age were assessed both with age as a continuous variable and segmenting by age below 70 versus 70+.In total, 279 patients were included. The median age was 65±13 years and 159 (57%) were female. Age was not related to improvements in back NPRS and Oswestry Disability Index. Operative time, estimated blood loss, length of stay, perioperative and 90-day complications, unplanned readmissions, reoperations, and radiographic fusion rate also were not related to age. After multivariable risk adjustment, increasing age was associated with greater improvements in back NPRS. The decrease in back NPRS was 0.68 (95% confidence interval: 0.14, 1.22; P=0.014) points greater for every 10-year increase in age. Age was not associated with rates of complication, readmission, or reoperation.LLIF is a safe and effective procedure in the elderly population. Advanced age is associated with larger improvements in preoperative back pain. Surgeons should consider the benefits of LLIF and other minimally invasive techniques when evaluating elderly candidates for lumbar fusion.Level III.
View details for DOI 10.1097/BSD.0000000000001270
View details for PubMedID 34724454