2019 Volume 3 Issue 1 Pages 67-70
Introduction: Although there has been a dramatic improvement in the outcomes of conservative treatment to achieve bony healing due to advances in diagnostic and therapeutic tools, in some patients, the results continue to be unfavorable. The purpose of this study was to investigate the outcomes of conservative treatment in pediatric patients with stress fractures occurring in the lamina that are discontinuous due to a contralateral pars defect or spina bifida occulta (SBO).
Methods: The medical records at our outpatient clinic for 103 consecutive patients (83 boys, 20 girls) with lumbar spondylolysis (LS) were reviewed to identify those who had presented with a stress fracture and a contralateral pars defect or with SBO at the affected lamina level.
Results: Twelve patients (11 boys, 1 girl) of mean age 12.3 (range 8-16) years were identified. Except for 1 stress structure that occurred at L4, all the stress fractures occurred at L5. Six patients had a pars defect, 5 had SBO, and 1 had both. Two of the 6 patients with a contralateral pars defect had early LS, 3 had progressive LS, and 1 had a pedicle fracture. The fracture healed in 1 (50%) of the 2 patients with early LS and in the patient with the pedicle fracture, but did not heal in any of the patients with progressive LS. Two of the 5 patients with SBO at the affected lamina level had early LS and 3 had progressive LS. The bony healing rate was 100% in the 2 patients with early LS and 66.7% in the 3 patients with progressive LS. The fracture healed in the patient with progressive LS and both a pars defect and SBO at the affected lamina.
Conclusions: Contralateral pars defect remains an unfavorable factor for bony healing discontinuous laminar stress fractures.