Does Intrathecal Baclofen Therapy Increase Prevalence and/or Progression of Neuromuscular Scoliosis?Spine Deform. 2017 11; 5(6):424-429.SD
Retrospective, case-matched review.
Compare a group of individuals with cerebral palsy (CP) who had intrathecal baclofen (ITB) pumps to a group of individuals with CP who did not have ITB pumps in order to determine if there was a difference in the prevalence of new-onset neuromuscular scoliosis, an increased rate of progression of preexisting neuromuscular scoliosis, or an increased rate of posterior spine fusion surgery in skeletally immature individuals with CP who had ITB pumps.
SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA
Various authors report conflicting findings, with some reporting an increased incidence or prevalence of scoliosis in individuals with CP who have ITB pumps whereas others report no difference in the rate of scoliosis between groups.
Retrospective chart and radiographic case-matched study in which individuals were matched by gender and Gross Motor Function Classification Scale (GMFCS) level.
We found no difference in the rates of new-onset neuromuscular scoliosis for those with CP and ITB pumps and those without ITB pumps. However, we did see a higher rate of progression as well as an increased rate of posterior spine fusion surgery in individuals with CP who had ITB pumps than for those with CP who did not have an ITB pump.
We continue to recommend ITB pump therapy for individuals with severe spasticity associated with CP (GMFCS IV and V). There is a significant risk of complications for individuals in general. The risk of neuromuscular scoliosis is relatively high in this population. Our findings suggest that individuals with CP who have ITB pumps and who do or do not have preexisting scoliosis should be monitored closely for either developing new neuromuscular scoliosis or progression of preexisting scoliosis.