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  • CS Colloquium: Michael Safaee (Keck) - From Tethers to Telomeres: Advances in Spine Surgery

    Tue, Oct 10, 2023 @ 04:00 PM - 05:50 PM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Michael Safaee, Keck Medicine of USC

    Talk Title: From Tethers to Telomeres: Advances in Spine Surgery

    Abstract: Junctional mechanical failures are a well recognized complication of long segment spinal fusions. Ligament augmentation with tethers can reduce junctional stress and minimize rates of proximal junctional failure PJF. A total of 242 patients with tethers were analyzed and compared to a historical cohort of 77 patients without tethers. Rates of reoperation for PJF were significantly lower with tethers 3.3 percent vs. 15.6 percent, p less than 0.001. A propensity matched cohort of 40 patients in each arm found similarly lower rates of PJF. 2.5 percent vs 22.5 percent, p equals 0.007). PJF emphasizes the need for improved preoperative risk stratification. Telomeres are DNA protein complexes that serve an important role in protecting genomic DNA. Their shortening is a consequence of aging and environmental exposures, with well established associations with diseases of aging and mortality. Whole blood was collected preoperatively on adults undergoing spine surgery. Telomere length analysis was performed using qPCR, T over S ratio. Among 43 patients, we found no significant difference in chronological age, DMI, frailty, or preoperative disability scores when comparing patients with a postoperative complication compared to those without a complication. However, patients with complications had significantly shorter telomere length T over S 0.712 vs. 0.813, p equals 0.008, which correlated to an additional attrition of 9 to 10 years despite only 5 year difference in chronological age. These data suggest that biological age may provide valuable information on preoperative risk and improve current risk calculators.

    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium

    Biography: Michael Safaee, MD, is a neurosurgeon specializing in the treatment of spinal disorders. He is trained in both traditional open and minimally invasive techniques, spinal oncology and adult deformity. While committed to caring for all patients, he has a special interest in scoliosis, kyphosis and revision surgery. Dr. Safaees goal is to treat patients with the same care he would want for his own family, providing safe, effective and durable outcomes tailored to the individual patient. Although surgery is almost always a last resort, he strives to educate patients with the knowledge needed to make the best decision for themselves. Dr. Safaee earned his medical degree from the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, followed by residency in the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of California, San Francisco. He completed a fellowship in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Dr. Safaee has over 100 peer reviewed publications and his work was recognized with the Russell A. Hibbs Award by the Scoliosis Research Society. Dr. Safaees research is currently focused on surgical outcomes in adult deformity surgery and spinal oncology, with a particular interest in risk assessment and data analytics. He is exploring the use of genetic and biological age as components of risk stratification.

    Host: Nenad Medvidovic

    Location: Olin Hall of Engineering (OHE) - 136

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Melissa Ochoa

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