Clinical Study|Articles in Press

Dyslipidemia as a novel risk for the development of symptomatic ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament



      Obesity and visceral fat have been implicated as potential factors in the pathogenesis of the ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL); the details of the factors involved in OPLL remain unclear.


      We aimed to determine the association between dyslipidemia and symptomatic OPLL.


      Single institution cross-sectional study.


      Data were collected from Japanese patients with OPLL (n=92) who underwent whole-spine computed tomography scanning. Control data (n=246) without any spinal ligament ossification were collected from 627 Japanese participants who underwent physical examination.


      Baseline information and lipid parameters, including triglycerides (TG), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) from fasting blood samples were collected to assess the comorbidity of dyslipidemia.


      Patient data were collected from 2020 to 2022. Patients with dyslipidemia were defined as those who were taking medication for dyslipidemia and who met one of the following criteria: TG ≥150 mg/dL, LDL-C ≥140 mg/dL, and/or HDL-C <40 mg/dL. The factors associated with OPLL development were evaluated using multivariate logistic regression analysis.


      The comorbidity of dyslipidemia in the OPLL group was more than twice that in the control group (71.7% and 35.4%, respectively). The mean body mass index (BMI) of the OPLL group was significantly higher than that of the control group (27.2 kg/m2 and 23.0 kg/m2). Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that dyslipidemia was associated with the development of OPLL (regression coefficient, 0.80; 95% confidence interval, 0.11–1.50). Additional risk factors included age, BMI, and diabetes mellitus.


      We demonstrated a novel association between dyslipidemia and symptomatic OPLL development using serum data. This suggests that visceral fat obesity or abnormal lipid metabolism are associated with the mechanisms of onset and exacerbation of OPLL as well as focal mechanical irritation due to being overweight.


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