横断像と矢状断像における椎間関節角度の加齢性変化 : 変性すべり症症例との比較
千川, 隆志 Tokushima University
長町, 顕弘 Takamatsu Municipal Hospital
Background: Despite facet joints being three-dimensional structures, previous computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging studies have evaluated facet joint orientation in only the axial plane. Facet joint orientation in the sagittal plane has rarely been studied using these imaging techniques. The aim of this study was to elucidate facet joint orientation in both the axial and sagittal planes on computed tomography.
Methods: A total of 568 patients (343 men, 225 women) (excluding orthopedic outpatients) for whom abdominal and pelvic computed tomography scans were obtained at our hospital between September 2010 and October 2012 were included. Mean age was 63 (range 21-90) years. Patients were divided into a degenerative spondylolisthesis group (67 patients; 30 men, 37 women) and a control group (313 patients; 313 men, 188 women). Facet joint orientation was evaluated in the control group according to patient age (≤50, 51-60, 61-70, or ≥71 years). The findings in the control group were then compared with those in the degenerative spondylolisthesis group. The orientation of the lumbar facet joints at each level was measured in the axial and sagittal planes on computed tomography images.
Results: Facet joint angles decreased with age at L4/5 and L5/S1 in women in the axial plane and at L4/5 in men and L3/4 and L4/5 in women in the sagittal plane. The variation in facet joint angle was greatest at L4/5 in women. Patients with degenerative spondylolisthesis showed more sagittally and horizontally oriented facet joints in the axial and sagittal planes; facet tropism showed an association with degenerative spondylolisthesis in the axial plane.
Conclusions: The axial and sagittal orientation of facet joints in the lower lumbar vertebra, especially L4/5, was negatively correlated with age. This finding could help to explain why older people are more prone to degenerative spondylolisthesis.
Journal of Orthopaedic Science
Elsevier B.V.|The Japanese Orthopaedic Association
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