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The value of short-term pain relief in predicting the 1-month outcome of 'indirect' cervical epidural steroid injections


Joswig, Holger; Neff, Armin; Ruppert, Christina; Hildebrandt, Gerhard; Stienen, Martin Nikolaus (2017). The value of short-term pain relief in predicting the 1-month outcome of 'indirect' cervical epidural steroid injections. Acta Neurochirurgica, 159(2):291-300.

Abstract

BACKGROUND Clinical management after epidural steroid injections (ESI) of patients with radiculopathy secondary to a cervical disc herniation (CDH) is uncertain. This study aims to determine whether short-term arm pain alleviation following computed tomography-guided 'indirect' cervical ESI can predict the 1-month outcome. METHODS We conducted a prospective observation of 45 consecutive patients at a tertiary radiological department. Study components were visual analog scale arm and neck pain at baseline, 15, 30, and 45 min, 1, 2, and 4 h, on days 1-14, 1 month, and at 1 year. Health-related quality of life and functional impairment were assessed using the short form-12 and Neck Pain and Disability Scale. Patients who reported ≥80 % persisting arm pain, as well as patients who underwent a second injection or an operation within 1 month were defined as 'non-responders'. Logistic regression was used to analyze the effect size of the relationship between >50 % pain relief at any given study visit and responder status. RESULTS Patients experiencing a >50 % pain reduction 4 h after the injection were four times as likely to be responders as those experiencing ≤50 % pain reduction (OR 4.04, 95 % CI 1.10-14.87). The effect was strongest on days 5-6 (OR 18.37, 95 % CI 3.39-99.64) and remained significant until day 14. CONCLUSIONS The results of this study can guide physicians in managing patients with CDH: a ≤50 % arm pain relief within 1 week after an 'indirect' cervical ESI predicts an unfavorable 1-month outcome and suggests that other treatment options may be considered at an earlier point in time.

Abstract

BACKGROUND Clinical management after epidural steroid injections (ESI) of patients with radiculopathy secondary to a cervical disc herniation (CDH) is uncertain. This study aims to determine whether short-term arm pain alleviation following computed tomography-guided 'indirect' cervical ESI can predict the 1-month outcome. METHODS We conducted a prospective observation of 45 consecutive patients at a tertiary radiological department. Study components were visual analog scale arm and neck pain at baseline, 15, 30, and 45 min, 1, 2, and 4 h, on days 1-14, 1 month, and at 1 year. Health-related quality of life and functional impairment were assessed using the short form-12 and Neck Pain and Disability Scale. Patients who reported ≥80 % persisting arm pain, as well as patients who underwent a second injection or an operation within 1 month were defined as 'non-responders'. Logistic regression was used to analyze the effect size of the relationship between >50 % pain relief at any given study visit and responder status. RESULTS Patients experiencing a >50 % pain reduction 4 h after the injection were four times as likely to be responders as those experiencing ≤50 % pain reduction (OR 4.04, 95 % CI 1.10-14.87). The effect was strongest on days 5-6 (OR 18.37, 95 % CI 3.39-99.64) and remained significant until day 14. CONCLUSIONS The results of this study can guide physicians in managing patients with CDH: a ≤50 % arm pain relief within 1 week after an 'indirect' cervical ESI predicts an unfavorable 1-month outcome and suggests that other treatment options may be considered at an earlier point in time.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Neurosurgery
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:February 2017
Deposited On:02 Feb 2017 08:28
Last Modified:31 Mar 2017 07:14
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0001-6268
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00701-016-2997-8
PubMed ID:27796650

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