Background: Although stimulus evoked electromyography (EMG) is commonly used to confirm the accuracy of pedicle screw placement. There are no studies to differentiate between solid screws and hollow screws to the electrical resistance of pedicle screws. We speculate that the electrical resistance of the solid and hollow pedicle screws may be different and then a potential source of error with stimulus-evoked EMG may happen. Materials and Methods: Resistance measurements were obtained from 12 pedicle screw varieties (6 screws of each manufacturer) across the screw shank based on known constant current and measured voltage. The voltage was measured 5 times at each site. Results: Resistance of all solid screws ranged from 0.084 Omega to 0.151 Omega (mean = 0.118 +/- 0.024 Omega) and hollow screws ranged from 0.148 Omega to 0.402 Omega (mean = 0.285 +/- 0.081 Omega). There was a significant difference of resistance between the solid screws and hollow screws (P < 0.05). The screw with the largest diameter no matter solid screws or hollow screws had lower resistance than screws with other diameters. No matter in solid screws group or hollow screws group, there were significant differences (P < 0.05) between the 5.0 mm screws and 6.0 mm screws, 6.0 mm screws and 7.0 mm screws, 5.0 mm screws and 7.0 mm screws, 4.5 mm screws and 5.5 mm screws, 5.5 mm screws and 6.5 mm screws, 4.5 mm screws and 6.5 mm screws. The resistance of hollow screws was much larger than the solid screws in the same diameter group (P < 0.05). Conclusions: Hollow pedicle screws have the potential for high electrical resistance compared to the solid pedicle screws and therefore may affect the EMG response during stimulus-evoked EMG testing in pedicle screw fixation especially in minimally invasive percutaneous pedical screw fixation surgery.
Wang HW,Liao XH,Ma XG,et al. Solid and hollow pedicle screws affect the electrical resistance: A potential source of error with stimulus-evoked electromyography[J]. INDIAN JOURNAL OF ORTHOPAEDICS,2013,47(4):352-356.