Pattern of Presentation and Surgical Management of Spine Tumors in Southeast Nigeria over a 10‑Year Period

  • M.C. Chikani
  • M. Messi
  • O. Okwunodulu
  • W. Mezue
  • S. Ohaegbulam
  • C. Ndubuisi
  • L. Iroegbu
  • S. Nkwerem
Keywords: Metastatic, spinal cord, spine tumors, surgery


Background: Spine tumors could affect the bony elements and/or its neural contents. Clinical manifestations are underlined by their biological behaviors. Aim: This study aims to identify the pattern of presentation and surgical management of spine tumors in southeast Nigeria over a 10-year period. Patients and Methods: A retrospective analysis of patients who were managed surgically for the spine and spinal cord neoplastic lesions over a 10-year period. All patients had pre-and post-operative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and histological diagnosis. Relevant clinical, radiological, and histological data were extracted and analyzed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) for windows version 21. Results: Four hundred and seventy-two spine procedures performed within the study period, 39 cases of histologically proven primary spinal cord tumors (PSCT) and non-PSCT were identified. These represented 8.3% of spine procedures. Seventeen were PSCT (3.6% of spine procedures), while 22 (4.7%) had non-PSCT, mean age for the PSCT group was 45 yrs and non-PSCT 59.5 years. A total of 56.5% of tumors are involved in the thoracic region, 43.7% in the cervical region. PSCT was likely to affect the cervical spine; while bony spine tumors, thoracic spine [odds ratio (OR) 4.9, P value 0.019]. A total of 84.6% of non-PSCT affected the bony spine, mainly the vertebral body. The histological result showed metastatic adenocarcinoma to be the most common tumor (33.3%). PSCT was likely to be benign than non-PSCT (P value < 0.00001). Gross total resection (GTR) was done in 100% of PSCT, and 50% in non-PSCT. Thirteen (40.6%) patients improved and 11 (34.4%) patients remained the same. Conclusions: Metastatic adenocarcinoma was the most common tumor of the spine. There was restricted ability at a GTR for non-PSCT compared to PSCT. Grossly 75% had improved/same neurological status, as such adjudged as a good outcome.


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