Height Gain Following Correction of Adult Spinal Deformity.



Height gain following a surgical procedure for patients with adult spinal deformity (ASD) is incompletely understood, and it is unknown if height gain correlates with patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs).


This was a retrospective cohort study of patients undergoing ASD surgery. Patients with baseline, 6-week, and subanalysis of 1-year postoperative full-body radiographic and PROM data were examined. Correlation analysis examined relationships between vertical height differences and PROMs. Regression analysis was utilized to preoperatively estimate T1-S1 and S1-ankle height changes.


This study included 198 patients (mean age, 57 years; 69% female); 147 patients (74%) gained height. Patients with height loss, compared with those who gained height, experienced greater increases in thoracolumbar kyphosis (2.81° compared with -7.37°; p < 0.001) and thoracic kyphosis (12.96° compared with 4.42°; p = 0.003). For patients with height gain, sagittal and coronal alignment improved from baseline to postoperatively: 25° to 21° for pelvic tilt (PT), 14° to 3° for pelvic incidence - lumbar lordosis (PI-LL), and 60 mm to 17 mm for sagittal vertical axis (SVA) (all p < 0.001). The full-body mean height gain was 7.6 cm, distributed as follows: sella turcica-C2, 2.9 mm; C2-T1, 2.8 mm; T1-S1 (trunk gain), 3.8 cm; and S1-ankle (lower-extremity gain), 3.3 cm (p < 0.001). T1-S1 height gain correlated with the thoracic Cobb angle correction and the maximum Cobb angle correction (p = 0.002). S1-ankle height gain correlated with the corrections in PT, PI-LL, and SVA (p < 0.001). T1-ankle height gain correlated with the corrections in PT (p < 0.001) and SVA (p = 0.03). Trunk height gain correlated with improved Scoliosis Research Society (SRS-22r) Appearance scores (r = 0.20; p = 0.02). Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Depression scores correlated with S1-ankle height gain (r = -0.19; p = 0.03) and C2-T1 height gain (r = -0.18; p = 0.04). A 1° correction in a thoracic scoliosis Cobb angle corresponded to a 0.2-mm height gain, and a 1° correction in a thoracolumbar scoliosis Cobb angle resulted in a 0.25-mm height gain. A 1° improvement in PI-LL resulted in a 0.2-mm height gain.


Most patients undergoing ASD surgery experienced height gain following deformity correction, with a mean full-body height gain of 7.6 cm. Height gain can be estimated preoperatively with predictive ratios, and height gain was correlated with improvements in reported SRS-22r appearance and PROMIS scores.

Level of evidence

Therapeutic Level III. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.





Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Diebo, Bassel G, Zachary Tataryn, Daniel Alsoof, Renaud Lafage, Robert A Hart, Peter G Passias, Christopher P Ames, Justin K Scheer, et al. (2023). Height Gain Following Correction of Adult Spinal Deformity. The Journal of bone and joint surgery. American volume. 10.2106/jbjs.23.00031 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/28761.

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Peter Passias

Instructor in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

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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