Surgery for Lumbar Spinal Stenosis in Individuals Aged 80 and Older

This article was to assess surgery  for lumbar stenosis in those aged 80 or more.  It set out to compare clinical outcomes after decompressive surgery for central lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) in individuals aged 80 and older with those of individuals aged 18–79.

Lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) is a common condition that often results from a gradual, degenerative ageing process. The clinical syndrome of LSS is often characterised by low back pain and lower extremity pain and numbness, and it is a frequent source of impaired walking and disability in older people (aged ≥60). There is growing evidence that surgical decompression offers an advantage over nonsurgical management for selected individuals with persistent severe symptoms.Selection of individuals for surgery is usually based on the integration of symptoms, clinical findings, and results from diagnostic imaging. LSS is the most frequent indication for spinal surgery in elderly adults, and as the oldest segment of the population continues to grow, the prevalence is likely to increase

This study adds to the evidence that laminectomy and micro-decompression appear to be safe procedures for participants aged 80 and older.


Age alone should not be a contraindication to surgery, as long as the individual is fit for surgery. Although they had minor complications and longer hospital stays, individuals aged 80 and older experienced improvement after surgical decompression for LSS that was similar to that of younger individuals.