Percutaneous anterior C1/2 transarticular screw fixation: salvage of failed percutaneous odontoid screw fixation for odontoid fracture.

Research paper by Ai-Min AM Wu, Hai-Ming HM Jin, Zhong-Ke ZK Lin, Yong-Long YL Chi, Xiang-Yang XY Wang

Indexed on: 01 Oct '17Published on: 01 Oct '17Published in: Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Research


The objective of this study is to investigate the outcomes and safety of using percutaneous anterior C1/2 transarticular screw fixation as a salvage technique for odontoid fracture if percutaneous odontoid screw fixation fails.Fifteen in 108 odontoid fracture patients (planned to be treated by percutaneous anterior odontoid screw fixation) were failed to introduce satisfactory odontoid screw trajectory. To salvage this problem, we chose the percutaneous anterior C1/2 transarticular screw fixation technique in treatment of these patients. The visual analogue score (VAS) of neck pain and Neck Disability Index (NDI) of all patients were scored at pre-operation, 3 months after operation, and final follow-up. Additional, technique-related complications were recorded and collected.Percutaneous C1/2 transarticular screw fixation was performed successfully in all 15 patients whose odontoid screw fixation failed. No technique-related complications (such as nerve injury, spinal cord injury, and esophageal injury) occurred. The VAS of neck pain and NDI score improved significantly (P = 0.000) after operation, and no significant differences were found when compared to 93 non-salvage patients who successfully performed the percutaneous anterior odontoid screw fixation. No screw loose or breakage occurred, all of the odontoid fractures achieve radiographic fusion, bony fusion bridge could be observed at the C1/2 lateral articular facet on 9/15 patients.We suggest that percutaneous anterior C1/2 transarticular screw fixation is a good alternative salvage technique if percutaneous odontoid screw fixation failed, and it is a minimally invasive, feasible, and safe technique.