Reduction in upper-extremity tone after lumbar selective dorsal rhizotomy in children with spastic cerebral palsy: Clinical article

Paul Gigante, Michael M. McDowell, Samuel S. Bruce, Genevieve Chirelstein, Claudia A. Chiriboga, Joseph Dutkowsky, Elizabeth Fontana, Joshua Hyman, Heakyung Kim, Dean Morgan, Toni S. Pearson, Benjamin D. Roye, David P. Roye, Patricia Ryan, Michael Vitale, Richard C.E. Anderson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Object. Randomized clinical trials have established that lumbar selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) reduces low-er-extremity tone and improves functional outcome in children with spastic cerebral palsy. Significant data exist to support a secondary effect on upper-extremity function in patients with upper-extremity spasticity. The effects of SDR on upper-extremity tone, however, are not well characterized. In this report, the authors sought to assess changes in upper-extremity tone in individual muscle groups after SDR and tried to determine if these changes could be predicted preoperatively. Methods. The authors retrospectively reviewed 42 children who underwent SDR at Columbia University Medical Center/Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of NewYork-Presbyterian between 2005 and 2011. Twenty-five had upper-extremity spasticity. All underwent pre- and postoperative examination for measuring tone (Modified Ashworth Scale) and assessing functional outcome. Follow-up examinations with therapists were performed at least once at a minimum of 2 months postoperatively (mean 15 months). Results. In the upper extremities, 23 (92%) of 25 patients had improvements of at least 1 Ashworth point in 2 or more independent motor groups on the Modified Ashworth Scale, and 12 (71%) of 17 families surveyed reported increases in motor control or spontaneous movement. The mean Modified Ashworth Scale scores for all upperextremity muscle groups demonstrated an improvement from 1.34 to 1.22 (p < 0.001). Patients with a mean preoperative upper-extremity tone of 1.25-1.75 were most likely to benefit from reduction in tone (p = 0.0019). Proximal and pronator muscle groups were most likely to demonstrate reduced tone. Conclusions. In addition to improvements in lower-extremity tone and function, SDR has demonstrable effects on upper extremities. Greater than 90% of our patients with elevated upper-extremity tone demonstrated reduction in tone in at least 2 muscle groups postoperatively. Patients with a mean Modified Ashworth Scale upper-extremity score of 1.25-1.75 may encounter the greatest reduction in upper-extremity tone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)588-594
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics
Volume12
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Dorsal rhizotomy
  • Pediatric
  • Peripheral nerve
  • Spasticity
  • Suprasegmental

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    Gigante, P., McDowell, M. M., Bruce, S. S., Chirelstein, G., Chiriboga, C. A., Dutkowsky, J., Fontana, E., Hyman, J., Kim, H., Morgan, D., Pearson, T. S., Roye, B. D., Roye, D. P., Ryan, P., Vitale, M., & Anderson, R. C. E. (2013). Reduction in upper-extremity tone after lumbar selective dorsal rhizotomy in children with spastic cerebral palsy: Clinical article. Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics, 12(6), 588-594. https://doi.org/10.3171/2013.9.PEDS12591