Intra-operative spinal cord monitoring in orthopaedics

S. Macrì, A. De Monte, T. Greggi, P. Parisini, A. Zanoni, L. Merlini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The surgical correction of spinal deformities carries a small but significant risk of injury to the spinal cord. To detect the onset and possibly reverse the effects of surgical complication, a variety of neurophysiological monitoring procedures can be employed. The purpose of this review is to provide information regarding the various methodologies available for monitoring spinal cord and nerve root function during orthopaedic procedures. Intra-operative monitoring of cortically recorded somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) by peripheral nerve stimulation is of value during orthopaedic surgery and is the state-of-the-art in terms of non-invasiveness, versatility, time requirement, lateral discrimination, and ease of electrode placement. Monitoring of motor evoked potentials (MEPs) is useful particularly in combination with SEPs but is still considered investigational. Root function monitoring has limited application and requires more clinical research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-139
Number of pages7
JournalSpinal Cord
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Intra-operative monitoring
  • Neurologic complications
  • Somatosensory evoked potentials
  • Spinal surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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