TitlePostural control of individuals with spinal fusion for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsLi, Y, Kakar, RSingh, Fu, Y-C, Walker, M, Brown, CN, Oswald, TS, Simpson, KJ
JournalClinical Biomechanics
Date Published11/2018


  • Most postural stability variables tested of people after spinal fusion were comparable to healthy controls.
  • Spinal fusion may reduce equilibrium scores during sensory organization tests.
  • Tendencies of reduced direction control and increased sway area could also be results of spinal fusion.
  • In general, people with spinal fusion exhibited satisfactory postural stability at 2 years post-operation.


The purpose of the study was to assess the postural stability and complexity of postural control for moderately physically active individuals with spinal fusion for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis at two years post-operation.


Limit of stability test and sensory organization test were conducted for 10 moderately physically-active participants with spinal fusion and 10 controls pair-matched for mass, height and physical activity level. During the limit of stability test, participants were instructed to lean the center of gravity as far as possible toward 8 predetermined directions and the maximum excursion and direction control were analyzed. During the sensory organization test, participants were instructed to maintain as still as possible in six test conditions and equilibrium scores and sway area of center of pressure were analyzed. Multi-scale entropy of center of pressure was calculated to quantify sway complexity.


Most postural stability outcomes of spinal fusion participants were comparable to controls except for significantly reduced equilibrium scores (p = 0.039, partial η2 = 0.217). Moreover, spinal fusion participants exhibited tendencies of reduced direction control (p = 0.053) during the limit of stability test and greater sway area (p = 0.052) during the sensory organization test.


Although the center of gravity control might be affected, spinal fusion individuals who were moderately physically active likely progressively learned to adapt postoperatively to their fused spine to meet the postural demands required when performing physical movements. We suggest that spinal fusion is a satisfactory treatment in regard to the recovery of postural stability.

Short TitleClinical Biomechanics