Multimodal Analgesia for Total Joint Arthroplasty.
Optimal perioperative pain control for total joint arthroplasty remains a challenge. Whereas traditional regimens have relied heavily on opioids, newer multimodal pathways are increasingly gaining popularity as safer and more effective alternatives. The main premise of multimodal analgesia is decreased consumption of opioids, and hence lesser opioid-related adverse events. Other reported advantages include lower pain scores, faster functional recovery, higher patient satisfaction, and shorter length of hospital stay. Unfortunately, despite the advent of numerous analgesic techniques, the multimodal approach has remained widely variable, making direct comparison between studies difficult to interpret. This article provides an extensive review of traditional and modern perioperative interventions in pain management for total joint arthroplasty, including intravenous patient-controlled analgesia, epidural infusion, oral opioids, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, acetaminophen, peripheral nerve blocks, periarticular infiltration, steroids, anticonvulsants, and long-acting local anesthetics. Emphasis is placed on pathophysiology, clinical evidence, and timing. A standardized multimodal analgesia protocol is also proposed based on best available evidence. In addition to pharmacologic interventions, patient education and interdisciplinary collaboration among the care teams play an important role in the success of any treatment pathway. With a growing demand for total joint arthroplasty in an era of bundled payments and accountable care, there has never been a greater need for a standardized multimodal analgesia pathway.
Halawi, MJ; Grant, SA; Bolognesi, MP
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