Sagittal spinopelvic malalignment in Parkinson disease: prevalence and associations with disease severity.


Study design

Prospective study.


Our objectives were to evaluate the prevalence of sagittal spinopelvic malalignment in a consecutive series of patients with Parkinson disease (PD) and to identify factors associated with sagittal spinopelvic deformity in this population.

Summary of background data

PD is a degenerative neurological condition characterized by tremor, rigidity, bradykinesia, and loss of postural reflexes. The prevalence of spinal deformity in PD is higher than that of age-matched adults without PD.


This study was a prospective assessment of consecutive patients with PD presenting to a neurology clinic during 12 months. Inclusion criteria included age more than 21 years and diagnosis of PD. Age- and sex-matched control group was selected from patients with cervical spondylosis. Clinical and demographic factors were collected including Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale score and Hoehn and Yahr stage. Full-length standing spine radiographs were assessed. Patients were grouped into either low C7 sagittal vertical axis (SVA) (<5 cm) or high C7 SVA (≥5 cm) and into matched (≤10°) or mismatched (>10°) pelvic incidence (PI)-lumbar lordosis.


Eighty-nine patients met criteria (41 males/48 females), including 52 with low C7 SVA and 37 with high C7 SVA. Significantly higher prevalence of high C7 SVA was found in PD (41.6 vs. 16.8%; P < 0.001). The high C7 SVA group was significantly older (72.4 vs. 65.1 yr; P < 0.001) and had a higher proportion of females (68% vs. 44%; P = 0.034), greater severity of PD based on Hoehn and Yahr stage (1.89 vs. 1.37; P < 0.001) and Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale (30.5 vs. 17.2; P = 0.002. Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale significantly correlated with C7 SVA (r = 0.474). Compared with the matched (≤10°) PI-lumbar lordosis group, the mismatch PI-lumbar lordosis group had higher C7 SVA, higher PI, higher pelvic tilt, lower lumbar lordosis, and lower thoracic kyphosis (P ≤ 0.003).


Patients with PD have a high prevalence of sagittal spinopelvic malalignment than control group patients. Greater severity of PD is associated with sagittal spinopelvic malalignment.

Level of evidence






Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Oh, Jae Keun, Justin S Smith, Christopher I Shaffrey, Virginie Lafage, Frank Schwab, Christopher P Ames, Morio Matsumoto, Jong Sam Baik, et al. (2014). Sagittal spinopelvic malalignment in Parkinson disease: prevalence and associations with disease severity. Spine, 39(14). pp. E833–E841. 10.1097/brs.0000000000000366 Retrieved from

This is constructed from limited available data and may be imprecise. To cite this article, please review & use the official citation provided by the journal.



Christopher Ignatius Shaffrey

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery

I have more than 25 years of experience treating patients of all ages with spinal disorders. I have had an interest in the management of spinal disorders since starting my medical education. I performed residencies in both orthopaedic surgery and neurosurgery to gain a comprehensive understanding of the entire range of spinal disorders. My goal has been to find innovative ways to manage the range of spinal conditions, straightforward to complex. I have a focus on managing patients with complex spinal disorders. My patient evaluation and management philosophy is to provide engaged, compassionate care that focuses on providing the simplest and least aggressive treatment option for a particular condition. In many cases, non-operative treatment options exist to improve a patient’s symptoms. I have been actively engaged in clinical research to find the best ways to manage spinal disorders in order to achieve better results with fewer complications.

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