Minimally invasive percutaneous iliac screws: Initial 24 case experience with CT confirmation

Michael Y. Wang, Seth Williams, Praveen V. Mummaneni, Jonathan D. Sherman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA: Percutaneous pedicle screws have become accepted as an effective method for segmental fixation in a variety of settings. However, fixation to the pelvis, which offers unique biomechanical advantages, had remained elusive from a minimally invasive approach. OBJECTIVE: To ascertain the safety of percutaneous iliac screws implanted placement using fluoroscopic guidance. METHODS: In an effort to verify the accuracy of a fluoroscopically-guided technique for safe iliosacral screw placement, we reviewed the imaging results from 24 consecutive patients undergoing this procedure. Percutaneous iliac screw placement was accomplished using primarily X-Ray guided screw insertion (obturator outlet view technique) without frameless image-guidance and with limited exposure of bony landmarks or tactile feedback. Indications for surgery included infection, neoplasia, trauma, and deformity. All patients underwent early postoperative CT scanning to determine the accuracy of screw positioning. RESULTS: A total of 24 patients had 47 screws placed for fixation at the lumbosacral junction. No cases required abortion of the procedure or conversion to an open operation. All of the percutaneous screws were placed appropriately as verified by postoperative CT scanning with three-dimensional reconstruction. There were no hardware related complications. However, one 75 year-old patient suffering a sacral fracture died of medical co-morbidities on postoperative day 10. CONCLUSIONS: A minimally invasive technique for iliac screw placement can be performed safely with a low likelihood of bony violation. This technique offers the unique biomechanical advantages of iliac fixation without the soft tissue exposure traditionally needed for safe hardware insertion. The technique relies on high quality intraoperative fluoroscopic imaging.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Spinal Disorders and Techniques
StateAccepted/In press - Sep 25 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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