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Plasma Glucose Levels With Dexamethasone as Adjuvant to Interscalene Block

Information source: Lifespan
ClinicalTrials.gov processed this data on August 23, 2015
Link to the current ClinicalTrials.gov record.

Condition(s) targeted: Shoulder Pain; Injury of Shoulder Region; Disorder of Shoulder; Disorder of Rotator Cuff; Disorder of Tendon of Biceps

Intervention: Dexamethasone (Drug); Bupivacaine (Drug)

Phase: Phase 3

Status: Withdrawn

Sponsored by: Lifespan

Official(s) and/or principal investigator(s):
Geoffrey W Wilson, M.D., Principal Investigator, Affiliation: United States Navy
Raul Masing, M.D., Principal Investigator, Affiliation: Lifespan


The purpose of this study is to determine the Finger Blood Glucose (sugar) when dexamethasone is added to a local anesthetic for a shoulder nerve block procedure. The investigators hypothesize that there is no increase in plasma glucose when 8 mg of dexamethasone is used as an adjuvant with local anesthetic to interscalene regional anesthesia. By performing finger stick blood glucose measures pre/peri and post operatively the investigators will be able to determine if any such increase exists.

Clinical Details

Official title: Plasma Glucose Levels With Dexamethasone as Adjuvant to Interscalene Block

Study design: Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Pharmacokinetics/Dynamics Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Treatment

Primary outcome: Increased Blood Sugar after Dexamethasone added to local anesthetic for interscalene nerve block.

Secondary outcome:

Pain post-operative(immediately)- both at rest and with movement(VAS Scale)

Time until first narcotic usage post operatively

Block Quality and Duration(time until first motor return)

Block Quality and Duration(time until first sensory return)

Detailed description: Patients receiving regional anesthesia for orthopedic surgeries are provided with significant pain relief in the post-operative period. Dexamethasone as an adjuvant to local anesthetic has been shown to provide increased duration of block without adverse effects. Use of steroids as adjuvants are restricted to non-diabetics due to concern for increased plasma glucose from systemic absorption. The investigators hypothesize that there will be no difference(increase) from patient baseline(preoperative plasma glucose) in plasma glucose levels up to 4 hours post nerve block in patients who receive 8 mg of dexamethasone used as an adjuvant with local anesthetic to interscalene regional anesthesia. Research has demonstrated the safety and efficacy of dexamethasone as an adjuvant to local anesthetic in peripheral nerve block. Currently there are no studies which document any plasma glucose effects(or lack of effects) from dexamethasone used as an adjuvant to regional anesthesia. Currently dexamethasone is used clinically off label by anesthesiologists as an adjuvant in association with local anesthetic for nerve block anesthesia. Once studies are completed, the investigators hope to allow diabetics to also receive the prolongation of pain relief associated with the use of steroid as an adjuvant. In addition, the increased educational and pharmacological data gleamed from the data can potentially be utilized for future studies with dexamethasone utilized perineurally.


Minimum age: 18 Years. Maximum age: 75 Years. Gender(s): Both.


Inclusion Criteria:

- ASA 1 or ASA 2 male or female non pregnant patients undergoing elective shoulder

arthroscopy for surgical repair. Exclusion Criteria:

- severe lung disease

- contralateral diaphragmatic paralysis

- coagulopathy

- pregnancy

- pre-existing neuropathy involving the surgical limb

- systemic use of corticosteroids for 2 weeks or longer within 6 months of surgery

- chronic opioid use (30 mg oral oxycodone equivalent per day)

- diabetes I or II

- diagnosis of "pre-diabetes"

- currently prescribed any of the oral glucose medications :sulfonylureas,

meglitinides, biguanides, thiazolidinediones, alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, or DPP-4 inhibitors.

Locations and Contacts

Newport Hospital, Newport, Rhode Island 02840, United States
Additional Information

Related publications:

Cummings KC 3rd, Napierkowski DE, Parra-Sanchez I, Kurz A, Dalton JE, Brems JJ, Sessler DI. Effect of dexamethasone on the duration of interscalene nerve blocks with ropivacaine or bupivacaine. Br J Anaesth. 2011 Sep;107(3):446-53. doi: 10.1093/bja/aer159. Epub 2011 Jun 14.

Williams BA, Hough KA, Tsui BY, Ibinson JW, Gold MS, Gebhart GF. Neurotoxicity of adjuvants used in perineural anesthesia and analgesia in comparison with ropivacaine. Reg Anesth Pain Med. 2011 May-Jun;36(3):225-30. doi: 10.1097/AAP.0b013e3182176f70.

Thornton PC, Grant SA, Breslin DS. Adjuncts to local anesthetics in peripheral nerve blockade. Int Anesthesiol Clin. 2010 Fall;48(4):59-70. doi: 10.1097/AIA.0b013e3181f89af1. Review.

Bigat Z, Boztug N, Hadimioglu N, Cete N, Coskunfirat N, Ertok E. Does dexamethasone improve the quality of intravenous regional anesthesia and analgesia? A randomized, controlled clinical study. Anesth Analg. 2006 Feb;102(2):605-9.

Kopacz DJ, Lacouture PG, Wu D, Nandy P, Swanton R, Landau C. The dose response and effects of dexamethasone on bupivacaine microcapsules for intercostal blockade (T9 to T11) in healthy volunteers. Anesth Analg. 2003 Feb;96(2):576-82, table of contents.

Kopacz DJ, Bernards CM, Allen HW, Landau C, Nandy P, Wu D, Lacouture PG. A model to evaluate the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic variables of extended-release products using in vivo tissue microdialysis in humans: bupivacaine-loaded microcapsules. Anesth Analg. 2003 Jul;97(1):124-31, table of contents.

Dräger C, Benziger D, Gao F, Berde CB. Prolonged intercostal nerve blockade in sheep using controlled-release of bupivacaine and dexamethasone from polymer microspheres. Anesthesiology. 1998 Oct;89(4):969-79.

Movafegh A, Razazian M, Hajimaohamadi F, Meysamie A. Dexamethasone added to lidocaine prolongs axillary brachial plexus blockade. Anesth Analg. 2006 Jan;102(1):263-7.

Manchikanti L, Boswell MV, Datta S, Fellows B, Abdi S, Singh V, Benyamin RM, Falco FJ, Helm S, Hayek SM, Smith HS; ASIPP. Comprehensive review of therapeutic interventions in managing chronic spinal pain. Pain Physician. 2009 Jul-Aug;12(4):E123-98. Review.

Holte K, Werner MU, Lacouture PG, Kehlet H. Dexamethasone prolongs local analgesia after subcutaneous infiltration of bupivacaine microcapsules in human volunteers. Anesthesiology. 2002 Jun;96(6):1331-5.

Parrington SJ, O'Donnell D, Chan VW, Brown-Shreves D, Subramanyam R, Qu M, Brull R. Dexamethasone added to mepivacaine prolongs the duration of analgesia after supraclavicular brachial plexus blockade. Reg Anesth Pain Med. 2010 Sep-Oct;35(5):422-6. doi: 10.1097/AAP.0b013e3181e85eb9.

Vieira PA, Pulai I, Tsao GC, Manikantan P, Keller B, Connelly NR. Dexamethasone with bupivacaine increases duration of analgesia in ultrasound-guided interscalene brachial plexus blockade. Eur J Anaesthesiol. 2010 Mar;27(3):285-8. doi: 10.1097/EJA.0b013e3283350c38.

Raj's Practical Management of Pain, 4th ed. Benzon HT, Rathmel JP, Wu CL, Turk DC, Argoff CE, eds. Philadelphia: Mosby/Elsevier, 2008.

Starting date: November 2012
Last updated: May 17, 2013

Page last updated: August 23, 2015

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