Influence of Frailty on Life Expectancy in Octogenarians After Lumbar Spine Surgery


Many studies have reported positive surgical outcomes and decreased mortality after spine surgery in the elderly population, including patients between 85 and 90 years of age. Here, in addition to patient age, we investigated the influence of frailty on short and long-term mortality in octogenarians after lumbar surgery.

Materials and methods:

We performed a retrospective analysis of 162 patients over 80 years of age who underwent posterior lumbar fusion or decompressive laminectomy between January 2011 and September 2016. We examined patient survival and modified frailty index (mFI) from medical records.


By October 2019, 29 of 162 patients had expired (follow up period: 1-105 months). Three-month mortality was 1.9%, and one-year mortality was 4.9%. Frailty did not affect long-term survival at one year but was associated with 3-month mortality (p=0.024).


There was no relationship in long-term survival according to frailty in patients 80 years of age or older, but a difference was identified in short-term mortality. When making a surgical decision for lumbar spine surgery in frail patients over 80 years of age, surgeons should pay attention to the short-term prognosis.


Frailty; Lumbar spine surgery; Mortality; Octogenarians; Short-term outcome.

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