Analysis of the Factors Contributing to Vertebral Compression Fractures After Spine Stereotactic Radiosurgery

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International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics


PURPOSE: To determine our institutional vertebral compression fracture (VCF) rate after spine stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and determine contributory factors.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Retrospective analysis from 2001 to 2013 at a single institution was performed. With institutional review board approval, electronic medical records of 1905 vertebral bodies from 791 patients who were treated with SRS for the management of primary or metastatic spinal lesions were reviewed. A total of 448 patients (1070 vertebral bodies) with adequate follow-up imaging studies available were analyzed. Doses ranging from 10 Gy in 1 fraction to 60 Gy in 5 fractions were delivered. Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging were used to evaluate the primary endpoints of this study: development of a new VCF, progression of an existing VCF, and requirement of stabilization surgery after SRS.

RESULTS: A total of 127 VCFs (11.9%; 95% confidence interval [CI] 9.5%-14.2%) in 97 patients were potentially SRS induced: 46 (36%) were de novo, 44 (35%) VCFs progressed, and 37 (29%) required stabilization surgery after SRS. Our rate for radiologic VCF development/progression (excluding patients who underwent surgery) was 8.4%. Upon further exclusion of patients with hematologic malignancies the VCF rate was 7.6%. In the univariate analyses, females (hazard ratio [HR] 1.54, 95% CI 1.01-2.33, P=.04), prior VCF (HR 1.99, 95% CI 1.30-3.06, P=.001), primary hematologic malignancies (HR 2.68, 95% CI 1.68-4.28, P

CONCLUSIONS: Single-fraction SRS doses of 16 to 18 Gy to the spine seem to be associated with a low rate of VCFs. To the best of our knowledge, this is the largest reported experience analyzing SRS-induced VCFs, with one of the lowest event rates reported.

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Adolescent; Adult; Aged; Aged, 80 and over; Analysis of Variance; Confidence Intervals; Disease Progression; Female; Fracture Fixation; Fractures, Compression; Hematologic Neoplasms; Humans; Magnetic Resonance Imaging; Male; Middle Aged; Radiosurgery; Radiotherapy Dosage; Retrospective Studies; Risk Factors; Sex Factors; Spinal Fractures; Spinal Neoplasms; Tomography, X-Ray Computed

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