Comparison between lumbar and thoracic epidural morphine for severe isolated blunt chest wall trauma: a randomized open-label trial
Journal of Anesthesia, 06/11/2012
Hakim SM et al. – Lumbar and thoracic epidural morphine administered as once–daily injection to patients with severe isolated blunt chest wall trauma were comparable in terms of pain control, incidence of pulmonary complications, and occurrence of epidural morphine–related side effects.Methods
- Fifty–five patients who sustained severe isolated blunt chest wall trauma were randomized using a computer–generated list to receive epidural morphine injection every 24h through an epidural catheter inserted into the lumbar (n=28) or thoracic (n=27) region.
- Need for mechanical ventilation, incidence of pneumonia, arterial blood gas values, and pulmonary function tests were compared in both groups.
- Pain scores, supplemental analgesic consumption, length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay, and occurrence of epidural morphine–related side effects were compared as well.
- Primary outcome measures were need for mechanical ventilation and incidence of pneumonia.
- Five (17.9 %) patients in the lumbar group were mechanically ventilated, compared with six (22.2 %) in the thoracic group (hazard ratio 1.35; 95 % CI 0.41–4.4; P=0.611).
- Seven (25 %) patients in the lumbar group developed pneumonia versus six (22.2 %) in the thoracic group (hazard ratio 0.97; 95 % CI 0.33–2.9; P=0.96).
- Both groups were comparable as regards the duration of mechanical ventilation (P=0.141) and length of ICU stay (P=0.227).
- Pain scores, supplemental analgesic consumption, pulmonary function, and occurrence of epidural morphine–related side effects were, likewise, comparable (P>0.05).