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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 64  |  Issue : 10  |  Page : 869-873

Continuous quadratus lumborum block as post-operative strategy for pain control in spinal fusion surgery

1 Department of Anaesthesia, Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center Mt. Shasta, Mount Shasta, Redding, USA
2 Department of Pharmacy, Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center Redding, Redding, USA
3 Department of Pharmacy, Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center Mt. Shasta, Mount Shasta, USA
4 Department of Clinical Informatics, Dignity Health Southern California Regional Office, CA, USA
5 Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, Arrixaca University Clinical Hospital, Murcia, Spain
6 Department of Nurse Anaesthesia, College of Health Sciences, Midwestern University, Glendale, AZ, USA

Correspondence Address:
Jon Wilton
Department of Anaesthesia, Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center Mt. Shasta, 914 Pine St., Mount Shasta, CA 96067
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ija.IJA_476_20

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Background and Aims: Lumbar spinal fusions have post-operative pain levels that can be difficult to treat. The objective of this study was to determine if using bilateral quadratus lumborum (QL) nerve block catheters for lumbar fusions changes the patient's post-operative recovery experience by reducing opioid consumption, thereby limiting potential risks and side effects and reducing recovery time. Methods: There were a total of 52 surgical lumbar fusion patients in this single-center, retrospective cohort review. In control Group A, there were 26 patients who received opioid regimens. In control Group B, there were 26 patients who received bilateral QL block catheters with breakthrough opioid regimens. Forty-eight hour post-operative opioid use in oral morphine milligram equivalents (MME) and length of stay (LOS) from the post-anaesthesia care unit to hospital discharge were examined. Results: Group A had a mean MME of 307.62 ± 305.37 mg. Group B had a statistically significant lower mean total MME of 133.78 ± 152.66 mg (P = 0.012, α = 0.05). On an average, Group A required 2.3 times the MMEs than Group B. Group A had a mean LOS of 2.34 ± 1.87 days, whereas Group B had a lower mean LOS of 1.98 ± 0.51 days. This difference of 0.36 days was not statistically significant (P = 0.522, α = 0.05). Conclusion: Surgical lumbar fusion patients who received the QL block catheter had a lower opioid requirement compared to standard opioid regimens. The study was underpowered to detect a difference in LOS.

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