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Free area of the spinal canal and Torg’s ratio in acute cervical trauma and degenerative disease: MANCOVA and correlational analyses.

Author(s):

Lidieth Martinez-Martinez, Jose Domingo Perez-Perez, Jose Luis Soto-Hernandez, Roberto Corona-Cedillo and Ernesto Roldan-Valadez*   Pages 1 - 10 ( 10 )

Abstract:


Background: The two of the most common indications for magnetic resonance (MR) imaging of the cervical spine include acute spine trauma and degenerative disease.

Objective: We aimed to correlate the measurements of the free area of the spinal canal (FASC), a new approach to the cervical spinal canal compromise, with the Torg´s ratio quantification of the cervical spine.

Methods: Cross-sectional study including 50 cervical-spine MR evaluations of patients with acute cervical trauma or degenerative disease. We used multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) to identify the type of lesion, intervertebral level and gender differences between FASC and Torg´s ratio quantification of the cervical spine; age was the controlled covariate. Correlates between FASC and Torg´s ratio were obtained at each intervertebral level.

Results: There was a non-significant interaction between the type of lesion, gender and intervertebral levels between FASC and Torg´s ratio measurements, F (8, 456) 0.260, p = .978; Wilks' Lambda 0.991; with a small effect size (partial η2 = .005). Among the main effects, only the gender was statistically significant: F (2, 228) = 3.682, p = .027. The age (controlled covariate) was non-significantly related to FASC and Torg´s ratio quantification: F (2, 228) = .098, p = .907. The Pearson´s correlation coefficient depicted a poor, non-significant agreement between FASC and Torg´s ratio.

Conclusions: FASC provide an integrative evaluation of the cervical spinal canal compromise in acute, cervical spine trauma and degenerative disease. Further observations and correlation with specific neurological symptoms, surgical findings and outcome are necessary to assess the usefulness of FASC in clinical settings.

Keywords:

cervical spine, free area of the spinal canal, magnetic resonance imaging, spinal stenosis, spondylarthritis, Torg's ratio.

Affiliation:

Magnetic Resonance Unit, Medica Sur Clinic & Foundation. Mexico City, Orthopedics Unit, Medica Sur Clinic & Foundation. Mexico City, Infectious Diseases Department. National Institute of Neurology and Neurosurgery. Mexico City, Magnetic Resonance Unit, Medica Sur Clinic & Foundation. Mexico City, Directorate of Research, Hospital General de Mexico “Dr. Eduardo Liceaga”. Mexico City



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