Clin Orthop Surg.  2020 Sep;12(3):343-352. 10.4055/cios20021.

Prevalence of Gastrointestinal and Cardiovascular Risk in Patients with Degenerative Lumbar Spinal Disease

  • 1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea


Limited information is available about the proportion of patients with degenerative lumbar spinal disease (DLSD) who have gastrointestinal (GI) and cardiovascular (CV) risk factors. Many DLSD patients are prescribed nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that are known to carry risks to the GI and CV systems by increasing GI bleeding and thromboembolic events. This study aimed to measure the prevalence of GI and CV risk in patients with DLSD and to ascertain whether the prescription of NSAIDs is in line with current guidelines.
This study included 153 patients with symptomatic DLSD who were planning to undergo lumbar spinal surgery. The GI profile was checked using the GI Standardized Calculator of Risk for Event system and CV risk was evaluated using the presence of metabolic syndrome. The conformity of the prescription of NSAIDs was investigated according to the recommendations in current guidelines.
More than half of the patients (59.5%) had high or very high GI risk, and 66% of the patients were diagnosed with metabolic syndrome, which corresponds with CV risk. The rate of simultaneous GI and CV risk was 40.5% (n = 62 / 153; gastrointestinal Standardized Calculator of Risk for Event, > high and metabolic syndrome, yes). The actual prescription of NSAIDs was not in accordance with current guidelines.
Two out of 3 patients had GI or CV risk factors, and approximately 40% of patients had both. Detailed assessment of GI and CV risk in patients with DLSD by using effective evaluation tools is mandatory for optimal medical treatment.


Gastrointestinal disorder; Cardiovascular disease; Risk assessment; Spine disease; Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents
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