Increasing incidence of degenerative spinal diseases in Japan during 25 years: The registration system of spinal surgery in Tohoku university spine society

Toshimi Aizawa, Shoichi Kokubun, Hiroshi Ozawa, Takashi Kusakabe, Yasuhisa Tanaka, Takeshi Hoshikawa, Ko Hashimoto, Haruo Kanno, Naoki Morozumi, Yutaka Koizumi, Tetsuro Sato, Hironori Hyodo, Fumio Kasama, Shinji Ogawa, Eiichi Murakami, Chikashi Kawahara, Jun Ichiro Yahata, Yushin Ishii, Eiji Itoi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Spinal disorders affect mainly older people and cause pain, paralysis and/or deformities of the trunk and/or extremities, which could eventually disturb locomotive functions. For ensuring safe and high-quality treatment of spinal disorders, in 1987, the Tohoku University Spine Society (TUSS) was established by orthopedic departments in Tohoku University School of Medicine and its affiliated hospitals in and around Miyagi Prefecture. All spine surgeries have been enrolled in the TUSS Spine Registry since 1988. Using the data from this registration system between 1988 and 2012, we demonstrate here the longitudinal changes in surgical trends for spinal disorders in Japan that has rushed into the most advanced “aging society” in the world. In total, data on 56,744 surgeries were retrieved. The number of spinal surgeries has annually increased approximately 4-fold. There was a particular increase among patients aged ≥ 70 years and those aged ≥ 80 years, with a 20- to 90-fold increase. Nearly 90% of the spinal operations were performed for degenerative disorders, with their number increasing approximately 5-fold from 705 to 3,448. The most common disease for surgery was lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) (35.9%), followed by lumbar disc herniation (27.7%) and cervical myelopathy (19.8%). In 2012, approximately half of the patients with LSS and cervical myelopathy were ≥ 70 years of age. In conclusion, the number of spinal operations markedly increased during the 25-year period, particularly among older patients. As Japan has a notably aged population, the present study could provide a near-future model for countries with aging population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-163
Number of pages11
JournalTohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine
Volume238
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Feb 11

Keywords

  • Aging society
  • Longitudinal study
  • Registry
  • Spine
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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  • Cite this

    Aizawa, T., Kokubun, S., Ozawa, H., Kusakabe, T., Tanaka, Y., Hoshikawa, T., Hashimoto, K., Kanno, H., Morozumi, N., Koizumi, Y., Sato, T., Hyodo, H., Kasama, F., Ogawa, S., Murakami, E., Kawahara, C., Yahata, J. I., Ishii, Y., & Itoi, E. (2016). Increasing incidence of degenerative spinal diseases in Japan during 25 years: The registration system of spinal surgery in Tohoku university spine society. Tohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine, 238(2), 153-163. https://doi.org/10.1620/tjem.238.153