Volume 3, 2017
|Number of page(s)||4|
|Published online||22 November 2017|
Does smoking affect the outcomes of lumbar decompression surgery?
Plymouth University Penisula School of Medicine and Dentistry, Tamar Science Park, Research Way, Plymouth, Devon
PL6 8DH, UK
2 Southwest Neurosurgery Centre, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth PL6 8DH, UK
* Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 7 September 2017
Introduction: Lumbar decompressions and micro-discectomies are commonly performed non-complex spinal surgeries that do not involve the insertion of metalwork into the spine and are done for symptomatic disc prolapse and lumbar spinal stenosis, whereas complex-spinal surgery does require metalwork . Studies of complex-spinal surgeries show that smoking has a significant negative impact on the outcome of the surgery  therefore, the cessation of smoking is advised prior to surgery . There are evidences in the literature supportive as well as opposing this statement about continued smoking and poor outcome of decompressive spinal surgeries.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed 143 consecutive patients who have had either a micro-discectomy or a micro-decompression.
Results: We found no statistical difference between smokers and non-smokers in the outcomes of lumbar decompression surgery. Both groups improved equally and significantly in terms of back pain, leg pain and functions. Out of 143 patients, only 2% more non-smokers had improved leg pain compared to smokers, 1% less non-smokers had improved back pain and 2% more non-smokers had an improved Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) score.
Discussion: We recommend that it is important to surgically treat both smokers and non-smokers in need of a lumbar spinal decompression.
Key words: Micro-discectomy / Spinal decompression / Smoking / Non-complex spinal surgery
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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