FacultyFocus 2-2019

AOSpine Knowledge Forum Tumor steering committee and associates meeting in Toronto, May 2019

AOSpine treatment recommendations and tools for spine oncology: what the surgeon should know

Following our previous FacultyFocus editions, where we shared the latest from our AOSpine Knowledge Forums Trauma, Deformity, and SCI, we want to draw your attention to the latest advances from our Knowledge Forum Tumor.


AOSpine has generated evidence-based practical clinical treatment recommendations for metastatic and primary spine tumors. The two most recent essential papers from the AOSpine Knowledge Forum (KF) Tumor came out this spring. The latest knowledge on metastatic spine tumors has also been adopted into the AO Surgery Reference and can easily be accessed at a moment’s notice on handheld devices.


“The Surgery Reference Metastatic Spine Tumor module highlights the key considerations and surgical indications when it comes to the evaluation of these patients,” author Ilya Laufer explains. “It organizes concepts in a way that readily helps surgeons make the right decisions, more easily come up with a surgical plan and know exactly what techniques to use for each individual case.”


While just ten to 15 years ago, metastasized cancer was an almost certain death sentence, maintaining ambulation and quality of life have become the primary focus of physicians. With a systematic approach, clinical outcomes for these patients will keep improving. The AO Surgery Reference Spine module can be accessed here . (Metastatic Tumor module to be published in summer 2019)


The AO Surgery Reference Spine module incorporates recommendations from the AOSpine KF Tumor Focus Issue II, published in Spine, October 15, 2016 Supplement, Volume 41, Issue 20S. The open-access evidence-based reference guide, applicable to these challenging patients, is available here .



This Focus Issue is supplemented by two recent articles published in the Global Spine Journal in May 2019: “Essential Concepts for the Management of Metastatic Spine Disease: What the Surgeon Should Know and Practice” and “Primary Bone Tumor of the Spine: An Evolving Field: What a General Spine Surgeon Should Know.” Read and download the articles here:


Essential Concepts for the Management of Metastatic Spine Disease

Primary Bone Tumor of the Spine


Other important developments in the treatment of spinal tumors have been classifications and scoring systems, such as the Spine Instability Neoplastic Score (SINS) that facilitates diagnosis and referral patterns for patients with spinal instability. Read more and start using SINS here .


To evaluate which patients are improving, surgeons should use the first spine oncology-specific, patient-reported outcome (PRO) tool, the SOSGOQ2.0, validated by the AOSpine KF Tumor. It should be used in combination with a generic instrument—such as EQ-5D, SF-36, or PROMIS—so that it is easy to compare results to other studies and pathologies. Download the PRO tool and read more here .


To learn more about the AOSpine Knowledge Forum Tumor and our ongoing studies, visit www.aospine.org/kf-tumor .















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