Socioeconomic disparities in the utilization of spine augmentation for patients with osteoporotic fractures: an analysis of National Inpatient Sample from 2011 to 2015

Vwaire Orhurhu, Emeka Agudile, Robert Chu, Ivan Urits, Mariam Salisu Orhurhu, Omar Viswanath, Emmanuel Ohuabunwa, Thomas Simopoulos, Joshua Hirsch, Jatinder Gill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND CONTENT: Vertebral augmentation procedures are used for treatment of osteoporotic compression fractures. Prior studies have reported disparities in the treatment of patients with osteoporotic vertebral fractures, particularly with regards to the use of vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study is to report updates in racial and health insurance inequalities of spine augmentation procedures in patients with osteoporotic fractures. METHODS: With the use of the National Inpatient Sample, we identified hospitalized patients with osteoporotic fractures between the period of 2011 and 2015. Patients with spine augmentation, defined by the utilization of vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty, were also identified. Our primary outcome was defined as the utilization of spine augmentation procedures across ethnic (white, hispanic, black, and asian/pacific islander) and insurance (self-pay, private insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid) groups. Variables were identified from the NIS database using International Classification of Diseases, Ninth and Tenth diagnosis codes. Univariate and multivariate regression analysis was used for statistical analysis with p value <.05 considered significant. A subgroup analysis was performed across the utilization of kyphoplasty, vertebroplasty, and Medicare coverage. RESULTS: We identified a total of 110,028 patients with a primary diagnosis of vertebral fracture between 2011 and 2015 (mean age: 74.4±13.6 years, 68% women). About 16,237 patients (14.8%) underwent any type of spine augmentation with over 75% of the patients receiving kyphoplasty. Multivariate analysis showed that black patients (odds ratio [OR]=0.64, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.58–0.70, p<.001), Hispanic patients (OR=0.79, 95% CI: 0.73–0.86, p<.001), and Asian/Pacific Islander (OR=0.79, 95% CI: 0.70–0.89, p<.001) had significantly lower odds for receiving any spine augmentation compared with white patients. Patients with Medicaid (OR=0.59, 95% CI: 0.53–0.66, p<.001), private insurance (OR=0.90, 95% CI: 0.85–0.96, p=.001), and those who self-pay (OR=0.57, 95% CI: 0.47–0.69, p<.001) had significantly lower odds of spine augmentation compared with those with Medicare. Comparative use of kyphoplasty was not significantly different between white and black patients (OR=0.85, 95% CI: 0.70–1.04, p=.12). However, Hispanic patients (OR=0.84, 95% CI: 0.71–0.99, p=.04) and Asian/Pacific Islander patients (OR=0.73, 95% CI: 0.58–0.92, p=.007) had significantly lower use of kyphoplasty compared with white patients. The comparative use of kyphoplasty among patients receiving spine augmentation was not significantly different across each insurances status when compared with patients with Medicare. CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that racial and socioeconomic disparities continue to exist with the utilization of spine augmentation procedures in hospitalized patients with osteoporotic fractures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)547-555
Number of pages9
JournalSpine Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Kyphoplasty
  • Osteoporotic fractures
  • Socioeconomic disparities
  • Spine augmentation
  • Vertebroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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