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[Impact of 2 strategies of analgesia on postoperative pain after emergency hand surgery performed on an ambulatory basis]

Author(s): Robaux S, Coulibaly Y, Konate B, Boileau S, Cornet C, Dautel G, Laxenaire MC, Bouaziz H

Affiliation(s): Service d'anesthesie-reanimation chirurgicale, hopitaux de ville, CHU de Nancy, 29, avenue du Marechal-de-Lattre-de-Tassigny, 54035 Nancy cedex, France.

Publication date & source: 2003-10, Ann Fr Anesth Reanim., 22(8):691-6.

Publication type: Clinical Trial

OBJECTIVES: The assessment of the impact of various analgesic regimens on postoperative pain at home, following emergency and ambulatory hand surgery. STUDY DESIGN: Prospective comparative study of "before" and "after" groups by phone questionnaire on the first postoperative day. PATIENTS: All emergency and ambulatory surgery patients undergoing hand surgery in a specialist university hospital unit. METHODS: a) "Before" group (120 patients): analysis of current analgesic practice in the service (prescriptions by surgeon on duty), assessment of the incidence of pain scores with an intensity >/= 4 on a numerical score of 0 to 10, and identification of the most painful surgical interventions; b) formulation for these surgical interventions of multimodal analgesic protocols drown up by the anaesthetists; c) "After" group (51 patients): assessment of the efficacy of these analgesic protocols through comparison with the "before" group. RESULTS: a) "Before" group: the total incidence of pain scores with an intensity >/= 4 was 42% and in the case of conditions involving a joint or sepsis, 88%. Dextropropoxyfen-paracetamol alone was prescribed in 66% of cases and was associated with a 48% analgesic failure rate. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs were prescribed in 14% of cases, tramadol in 7% and a combination of drugs in 15%; b) "After" group: the incidence of pain scores with an intensity >/= 4 decreased to 21% in surgical interventions involving joints or sepsis (p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: Multimodal analgesic regimens are more effective than free prescriptions. This study underlines the need to further educate surgeons in this area. Despite these written protocols, there remains a 21% incidence of pain at home on day one.

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