Early and late hospital readmissions after spine deformity surgery in children with cerebral palsy

Harms Study Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Study design: Retrospective review of a prospectively collected multicenter registry of pediatric patients with cerebral palsy (CP) and neuromuscular scoliosis (NMS) undergoing spinal fusion. Objective: To define risk factors for unplanned readmission after elective spinal deformity surgery. Summary of background data: Patients with CP and NMS have high rates of hospital readmission; however, risk factors for readmission are not well established. Methods: Univariate and multivariate analyses were used to compare the demographics, operative and postoperative course, radiographic characteristics, and preoperative Caregiver Priorities and Child Health Index of Life with Disabilities (CPCHILD) questionnaires of patients who did not require readmission to those who required either early readmission (within 90 days of the index surgery) or late readmission (readmission after 90 days). Results: Of the 218 patients identified, 19 (8.7%) required early readmission, while 16 (7.3%) required late readmission. Baseline characteristics were similar between the three cohorts. On univariate analysis, early readmission was associated with longer duration of surgery (p < 0.001) and larger magnitude of residual deformity (p = 0.003 and p = 0.029 for postoperative major and minor angles, respectively). The health score of the CPCHILD Questionnaire was lower in patients who required early readmission than in those who did not require readmission (p = 0.032). On multivariate analysis, oral feeding status was inversely related to early readmission (less likely to require readmission), while decreasing lumbar lordosis and increasing length of surgery were related to an increased likelihood of early readmission. Conclusions: In patients with CP and NMS, longer surgical time, larger residual major and minor Cobb angles, lumbar lordosis, feeding status, and overall health may be related to a greater likelihood for early hospital readmission after elective spinal fusion. No factors were identified that correlated with an increased need for late hospital readmission after elective spinal fusion in patients with CP. Level of evidence: IV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)507-516
Number of pages10
JournalSpine deformity
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020


  • Cerebral palsy
  • Complications
  • Neuromuscular scoliosis
  • Pediatric
  • Readmissions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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