Open Access Open Badges Case Report

Reinstrumentation for rapid curve progression after implant removal following posterior instrumented fusion in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis: a case report

Toshiaki Kotani1*, Tsutomu Akazawa1, Jose MT Lumawig2, Tsuyoshi Sakuma1 and Shohei Minami1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Seirei Sakura Citizen Hospital, 2-36-2 Ebaradai Sakura-shi, Chiba 285-8765, Japan

2 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, The Medical City, Ortigas Avenue, Pasig City, Metro Manila 1605, Philippines

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Scoliosis 2013, 8:15  doi:10.1186/1748-7161-8-15

Published: 3 September 2013


Spinal implants are occasionally removed due to infection or soft tissue irritation secondary to prominence. Several studies have reported loss of scoliotic curve correction after implant removal. However, further review of the literature reveals no similar cases of rapid curve progression following implant removal in patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) necessitating repeat posterior instrumented fusion.

To describe a 15-year-old female AIS patient treated by posterior instrumented fusion, who developed unusual rapid coronal and sagittal curve progression after implant removal.

Case report.

Retrospective case report.

A 15-year-old female with Lenke type 1A AIS underwent a successful posterior spinal fusion with instrumentation. She initially had no complications after surgery, but three years after instrumentation, her implants were removed due to pain secondary to implant prominence. Fifteen months after removal, the main thoracic curve increased, compared with radiographs taken before removal, from 29° to 57°. This development required the patient to undergo additional surgery, which involved multiple osteotomies and posterior reinstrumentation.

We must acknowledge that a remarkable amount of progression can occur rapidly following implant removal in scoliotic patients. Taking this into consideration,we need to carefully explain to patients that removal of their implants entails a risk of progressive deformity and that they need to follow-up with their physician after implant removal.

Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis; Implant removal; Posterior spinal fusion