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Pain reduction after lumbar epidural injections using particulate versus non-particulate steroids: intensity of the baseline pain matters


Tagowski, Marek; Lewandowski, Zbigniew; Hodler, Jürg; Spiegel, Thomas; Goerres, Gerhard W (2019). Pain reduction after lumbar epidural injections using particulate versus non-particulate steroids: intensity of the baseline pain matters. European Radiology, 29(7):3379-3389.

Abstract

Objectives
To compare pain relief after CT-guided lumbar epidural steroid injections (ESI) using particulate (triamcinolone) and non-particulate (dexamethasone) steroids, and to explore factors affecting the effectiveness of both steroid types.
Methods
This retrospective observational study included 806 patients with lumbar radiculopathy and corresponding MRI or CT abnormalities of the lumbar spine, who were matched using the propensity score method, yielding two cohorts of 209 patients each. Pain intensity was evaluated prior to the procedure using a pain numerical rating scale (NRS) with range 0–10. Reevaluation took place 1 day and 4 weeks post-injection. Logistic regression analysis and cubic splines applied to generalized additive models were implemented to assess the differences in pain reduction after ESI in the analyzed patient groups.
Results
Four weeks post-injection, the overall chance of ≥ 50% pain reduction was lower in the dexamethasone group than that in the triamcinolone group (odds ratio [OR] = 0.55; p < 0.012). In the dexamethasone cohort, the intensity of baseline pain and the presence of a herniated intervertebral disc in the infiltrated segment were both significant and independent predictors of ≥ 50% pain relief. Patients with baseline NRS score ≥ 7 points had markedly less chance of ≥ 50% pain relief than patients with NRS score < 7 (OR = 0.53; p < 0.032), whereas disc herniation increased the chances more than twofold (OR = 2.29; p < 0.044). There was no significant correlation between the effectiveness of triamcinolone and any analyzed concomitant variables.
Conclusions
Triamcinolone was superior for lumbar radiculopathy of severe intensity. For mild to moderate pain, no benefit of using triamcinolone over dexamethasone was found. The effectiveness of dexamethasone was lower for stenotic spinal lesions than for disc herniation.

Abstract

Objectives
To compare pain relief after CT-guided lumbar epidural steroid injections (ESI) using particulate (triamcinolone) and non-particulate (dexamethasone) steroids, and to explore factors affecting the effectiveness of both steroid types.
Methods
This retrospective observational study included 806 patients with lumbar radiculopathy and corresponding MRI or CT abnormalities of the lumbar spine, who were matched using the propensity score method, yielding two cohorts of 209 patients each. Pain intensity was evaluated prior to the procedure using a pain numerical rating scale (NRS) with range 0–10. Reevaluation took place 1 day and 4 weeks post-injection. Logistic regression analysis and cubic splines applied to generalized additive models were implemented to assess the differences in pain reduction after ESI in the analyzed patient groups.
Results
Four weeks post-injection, the overall chance of ≥ 50% pain reduction was lower in the dexamethasone group than that in the triamcinolone group (odds ratio [OR] = 0.55; p < 0.012). In the dexamethasone cohort, the intensity of baseline pain and the presence of a herniated intervertebral disc in the infiltrated segment were both significant and independent predictors of ≥ 50% pain relief. Patients with baseline NRS score ≥ 7 points had markedly less chance of ≥ 50% pain relief than patients with NRS score < 7 (OR = 0.53; p < 0.032), whereas disc herniation increased the chances more than twofold (OR = 2.29; p < 0.044). There was no significant correlation between the effectiveness of triamcinolone and any analyzed concomitant variables.
Conclusions
Triamcinolone was superior for lumbar radiculopathy of severe intensity. For mild to moderate pain, no benefit of using triamcinolone over dexamethasone was found. The effectiveness of dexamethasone was lower for stenotic spinal lesions than for disc herniation.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Imaging
Uncontrolled Keywords:Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging, General Medicine
Language:English
Date:July 2019
Deposited On:26 Mar 2019 13:27
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 10:31
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0938-7994
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00330-019-06108-9
PubMed ID:30887207

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