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View Full Version : Corpectomy vs Vertebral Column Resection, and six month follow up



osumike
05-02-2017, 11:11 AM
Can someone explain the main differences in these two procedures? They appear to be very similar.

I saw my surgeon yesterday for my six month checkup. It's been a long, hard road, but a couple weeks ago, I feel like I just flipped a switch and started feeling MUCH better. Doc and I discussed the different surgical options for the future. The T6-sacrum fusion he did was mostly for stability of my spine, and achieved very little correction. I sill have a rib hump, as well as a slight protrusion of the left side of my chest, and my right rib cage is still hitting my hip. So obviously the VCR would be the most risky and invasive. We also talked about getting the bottom rib removed that's hitting the hip, and having basically a chest wall reconstruction to get rid of the protrusion.

I have a lot to think about and discuss with people about what to do. The doc never mentioned the corpectomy, it's just something I'm wondering about...

Otherwise, the doctor is happy with my progress overall. I'm finally going back to work in a week or two, which feels great. I'll finally feel like I have a purpose again. I know my thoughts are all over the place in this post, hope you can make sense of it!

LindaRacine
05-02-2017, 02:58 PM
Mike...

A corpectomy removes the vertebral body/bodies (the front of the spine), but leaves the posterior elements. A VCR removes it all.

CORPECTOMY (http://voxmd.com/images/lcf2.jpg)
VCR (https://jkoa.org/ArticleImage/0043JKOA/jkoa-51-30-g004-l.jpg) (Image D)

They're not typically interchangeable, in that there would be specific technical reasons why one would work better than the other for an individual case. If it were up to me, I'd trust that the surgeon was going to do whatever s/he felt would result in the best outcome. :)

--Linda

osumike
05-02-2017, 08:14 PM
Linda, thanks for that. I read that info before I posted, but I just couldn't picture it. When my surgeon and I talked about the VCR procedure, he didn't mention using a cage or anything. He said he'd do the removal, then get my spine into position from there, and joining the upper and lower vertebral bodies themselves. Just to make sure I understood that correctly, I asked if that meant I'd lose height, and he said yes. So let's say two VCR's are done, I'm guessing that'd be at least two inches lost. I'd think I would start to look way out of proportion at that point, right?

LindaRacine
05-03-2017, 11:42 PM
Linda, thanks for that. I read that info before I posted, but I just couldn't picture it. When my surgeon and I talked about the VCR procedure, he didn't mention using a cage or anything. He said he'd do the removal, then get my spine into position from there, and joining the upper and lower vertebral bodies themselves. Just to make sure I understood that correctly, I asked if that meant I'd lose height, and he said yes. So let's say two VCR's are done, I'm guessing that'd be at least two inches lost. I'd think I would start to look way out of proportion at that point, right?

I think you might notice it, but I doubt anyone else will. There's incredible variation in trunk lengths in humans, so you could still be in the normal range. If he's doing 2 VCRs without cages or spacers, you'll probably lose about 3", assuming that you still have some discs at those levels. If you don't have discs, then 2" is probably about right.

--Linda