Prognostic models for spinal metastatic disease: evolution of methodologies, limitations, and future opportunities
Advances in cancer biology and therapy have increased survival of metastatic disease patients and, in turn, the rates of metastatic epidural spinal cord compression (MESCC). Surgery can improve patient quality of life, but accurate estimation of postoperative survival is critical for appropriate patient selection, multidisciplinary management, and shared decision making. Survival estimation on the basis of clinician judgement alone has been shown to be inaccurate and unreliable. Numerous prognostic scoring systems have been developed to address this need but the inputs to these models, the modeling methodologies, and the model outputs have evolved significantly over time. Here we discuss the available scoring systems, existing limitations, and future opportunities.