Purpose: The purpose of this study is to describe national trends in spinal decompression without fusion and discectomy procedures in the US pediatric inpatient population. Methods: The Kids’ Inpatient Database (KID) was queried for pediatric patients with primary diagnoses of spinal spondylolysis/stenosis or disc herniation and having undergone spinal decompression without fusion or discectomy over more than a decade (2000 to 2012). The primary (indirect) outcomes of interest were in-hospital complication rates, length of stay (LOS), total costs, and discharge dispositions. Results: A total of 7315 patients, comprised of pediatric spinal spondylolysis/stenosis (n = 287, 3.92%) and pediatric disc herniation (n = 7028, 96.1%) patients, were included in the study. During the years 2000 to 2012, diagnoses of pediatric spondylolysis/spinal stenosis increased from 61 to 90 diagnoses per 3-year period, while diagnoses of pediatric disc herniation decreased from 2133 to 1335 diagnoses per 3-year period. Spinal decompression was associated with higher in-hospital complication rates (18.1 vs 5.3%, p < 0.0001), longer hospital stays (5 vs 1.69 days, p < 0.0001), higher mean total charges ($49,186 vs $19,057, p < 0.0001), and higher non-routine discharge rates (12.3 vs 2.5%, p < 0.0001) versus discectomy. Conclusions: Spinal decompression is associated with longer hospital stays, more complications, higher costs, and more non-routine discharges when compared to discectomy. The data supports the disparate nature of these disease processes and elucidates basic clinical trends in uncommon spinal disorders affecting children.
- Spinal decompression
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Clinical Neurology