10-Year Trends in the Surgical Management of Patients with Spinal Metastases: A Scoping Review

José Manuel Orenday-Barraza, María José Cavagnaro, Mauricio J. Avila, Isabel M. Strouse, Aaron Dowell, Haroon Kisana, Naushaba Khan, Robert Ravinsky, Ali A. Baaj

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Background: Spinal metastases are present in approximately 20% of patients with cancer, giving a risk for neurologic dysfunction and instability. In already frail patients, surgeons strive to improve quality of life. Our goal was to review a 10-year trend in the surgical management of spinal metastases. Methods: A scoping review was performed systematically using PubMed to assess trends in surgical treatment for spinal metastases. The search terms used were: metastas∗, "neoplasm metastasis"[Mesh], "Spine"[Mesh], spine, spinal, “vertebral column,” “vertebral body,” laser, robot, radiofrequency, screws, fixation, “separation surgery,” corpectomy, vertebrectomy, spondylectomy, vertebroplasty, kyphoplasty, surgery, “open surgery,” “mini open surgery,” “minimally invasive surgery,” endoscopy, thoracoscopy, corpectom∗, vertebrectom∗, spondylectom∗, “en bloc,” and MIS. The variables of interest were neurologic improvement, tumor recurrence, reoperation, and overall survival. Results: A total of 2132 articles were found within the primary query. Fifty-six studies were selected for final review. The results were organized into main surgical practices: decompression, mechanical stabilization, and pain management. For separation surgery, clinical outcomes were overall 1-year survival, 40.7%–78.4%; recurrence rate, 4.3%–22%; reoperation, 5%; and complications, 5.4%–14%. For corpectomy, clinical outcomes were overall 1-year survival, 30%–92%; reoperation, 1.1%–50%; and recurrence rate, of 1.1%–28%. Complications and reoperations with spinal instrumentation were 0%–13.6% and 0%–15%, respectively. Cement augmentation achieved pain reduction rates of 56%–100%, neurologic improvement/stability 84%–100%, and complication rates 6%–56%. Laser achieved local tumor control rate of 71%–82% at 1 year follow-up, reoperation rate of 15%–31%, and complication rate of 5%–26%. Conclusions: Minimally invasive techniques for decompression and stabilization seem to be the preferred method to surgically treat metastatic spine disease, with good outcomes. More research with high level of evidence is required to support the long-term outcomes of these approaches.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-186.e3
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Jan 2022


  • Metastases
  • Spine
  • Spine oncology
  • Spine surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of '10-Year Trends in the Surgical Management of Patients with Spinal Metastases: A Scoping Review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this