Bonus Summaries

Top Papers are articles in a specific subject rated by professionals and scholars in the field. Top 10 articles are displayed in an order from the most highest rating to the lowest. In order to rate an article, one must first register at as a member.

Surgery with disc prosthesis versus rehabilitation in patients with low back pain and degenerative disc: two year follow-up of randomised study.

Hellum C, Johnsen LG, Storheim K, Nygaard ØP, Brox JI, Rossvoll I, Rø M, Sandvik L, Grundes O, Norweigian Spine Study Group.

BMJ.  2011; 342: d2786.

PMID:  21596740

This multicenter randomized trial compared ProDisc to multidisciplinary rehabilitation in patients with chronic low back pain with disk degeneration.  This very high-quality report demonstrates that either treatment can be effective and surgery is more often effective but riskier.  They concluded that it is reasonable to try multidisciplinary rehabilitation before surgery.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

The Swedish Spine Register: development, design and utility.

Strömqvist B, Fritzell P, Hägg O, Jönsson B; Swedish Society of Spinal Surgeons.

Eur Spine J. 2009; 18 Suppl 3: 294-304.

PMID: 19495812

This paper describes the development of a national spine registry for degenerative spinal disorders, and reports some basic outcomes from over 35,000 patients during a decade of use.  This paper provides unique insights about the development of national registries, gender differences, and trends in spinal surgery during the past decade.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Patient information and education with modern media: the Spine Society of Europe Patient Line.

Pellisé F, Sell P, EuroSpine Patient Line Task Force.

Eur Spine J.  2009; S395-S401.

PMID:  19381695

This paper reviews patient information needs and describes EuroSpine’s patient education website.  This is an important project, since many patients become misinformed on the internet.  Although a good scholarly presentation, the article does not assess the website. If validated, this could serve as a model for many other health conditions.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Cervical Disc Arthroplasty.

Zindrick M, Harris MB, Humphreys SC, O’Leary PT, Schneiderman G, Watters WC 3rd, Turkelson CM, Wies JL, Raymond L.

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2010; 18: 631-637.

PMID: 20889952

full report upon which this paper is based:

This methodologically rigorous, AAOS-approved, systematic review on cervical arthroplasty addresses four key questions:  prognostic factors, clinical outcomes, complications, and length of recovery.  Regrettably, most studies were flawed or inconclusive.  An excellent guide to the literature on this emerging technology.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Health-related quality of life (EQ-5D) before and one year after surgery for lumbar spinal stenosis.

Jansson KA, Németh G, Granath F, Jönsson B, Blomqvist P.

J Bone Joint Surg Br. 2009; 91: 210-216.

PMID: 19190056

This observational cohort study from the Swedish spine registery reports the one-year quality-of-life changes for 230 patients. Following surgery, 80% reported improved quality-of-life, but the majority of patients did not reach population norms. This paper provides interesting information on patient-centered outcomes from a comprehensive study population.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Surgical Rates and Operative Outcome Analysis in Thoracolumbar and Lumbar Major Adult Scoliosis: Application of the New Adult Deformity Classification.

Schwab F, Lafage V, Farcy J-P, Bridwell K, Glassman S, Ondra S, Lowe T, Shainline M.

Spine.  2007; 32: 2723-2730.

PMID:  18007252

Using a multicenter database, this paper descriptively reports the rates of surgical procedures according to categories of a radiographic classification system.  Although some preliminary indicators are presented, the rate of clinical follow-up was too low to draw insights on which procedures should be used for which radiographic types of patients.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis: prevalence and association with low back pain in the adult community-based population.

Kalichman L, Kim DH, Li L, et al.

Spine.  2009; 34: 199-205.

PMID:  19139672

This community-based epidemiological study used CT-scans to assess spondylolysis and spondylolisthesis in a subset of subjects from the Framingham Heart Study.  They found a prevalence rates of 11.3% for spondylolysis, 8.2% for isthmic spondylolisthesis, and 13.6% for degenerative spondylolisthesis, but these diagnoses were not significantly associated with low back pain.

Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Predicting outcome and complications in the surgical treatment of adult scoliosis.

Schwab FJ, Lafage V, Farcy JP, Bridwell KH, Glassman S, Shainline MR.

Spine.  2008; 33: 2243-2247.

PMID:  18794768

This study developed an accurate prognostic model for outcomes and complication of surgery for adult scoliosis.  Regrettably, the predictive formula was not actually reported for further use by readers.  Also, the sample size was small and the formula was not confirmed on a separate sample.  Promising work needing further development.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Lumbar spinal stenosis: a brief review of the nonsurgical management.

Tran de QH, Duong S, Finlayson RJ.

Can J Anaesth. 2010; 57: 694-703.

PMID:  20428988

This narrative review covers 13 RCTs for non-surgical treatment of stenosis. Parenteral calcitonin and epidural blocks with local anesthetic relieve pain for less than three months, while addition of steroids and passive physical therapy are ineffective. This paper synthesizes the best available evidence on pharmacological treatment of stenosis.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments

Screening for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis: Review Article.

US Preventive Services Task Force.

JAMA. 1993; 269: 2667-2672.

PMID:  8487452

This 1993 narrative review paper from the US government provides a good overview of all the main issues for AIS screening programs, but it is now clearly outdated on many topics.  This would be an excellent starting point for an updated review paper.


Posted by on Nov 17, 2011 in Bonus Summaries | 0 comments