Interventional techniques: evidence-based practice guidelines in the management of chronic spinal pain.
ABSTRACT The evidence-based practice guidelines for the management of chronic spinal pain with interventional techniques were developed to provide recommendations to clinicians in the United States.
To develop evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for interventional techniques in the diagnosis and treatment of chronic spinal pain, utilizing all types of evidence and to apply an evidence-based approach, with broad representation by specialists from academic and clinical practices.
Study design consisted of formulation of essentials of guidelines and a series of potential evidence linkages representing conclusions and statements about relationships between clinical interventions and outcomes.
The elements of the guideline preparation process included literature searches, literature synthesis, systematic review, consensus evaluation, open forum presentation, and blinded peer review. Methodologic quality evaluation criteria utilized included the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) criteria, Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS) criteria, and Cochrane review criteria. The designation of levels of evidence was from Level I (conclusive), Level II (strong), Level III (moderate), Level IV (limited), to Level V (indeterminate).
Among the diagnostic interventions, the accuracy of facet joint nerve blocks is strong in the diagnosis of lumbar and cervical facet joint pain, whereas, it is moderate in the diagnosis of thoracic facet joint pain. The evidence is strong for lumbar discography, whereas, the evidence is limited for cervical and thoracic discography. The evidence for transforaminal epidural injections or selective nerve root blocks in the preoperative evaluation of patients with negative or inconclusive imaging studies is moderate. The evidence for diagnostic sacroiliac joint injections is moderate. The evidence for therapeutic lumbar intraarticular facet injections is moderate for short-term and long-term improvement, whereas, it is limited for cervical facet joint injections. The evidence for lumbar and cervical medial branch blocks is moderate. The evidence for medial branch neurotomy is moderate. The evidence for caudal epidural steroid injections is strong for short-term relief and moderate for long-term relief in managing chronic low back and radicular pain, and limited in managing pain of postlumbar laminectomy syndrome. The evidence for interlaminar epidural steroid injections is strong for short-term relief and limited for long-term relief in managing lumbar radiculopathy, whereas, for cervical radiculopathy the evidence is moderate. The evidence for transforaminal epidural steroid injections is strong for short-term and moderate for long-term improvement in managing lumbar nerve root pain, whereas, it is moderate for cervical nerve root pain and limited in managing pain secondary to lumbar post laminectomy syndrome and spinal stenosis. The evidence for percutaneous epidural adhesiolysis is strong. For spinal endoscopic adhesiolysis, the evidence is strong for short-term relief and moderate for long-term relief. For sacroiliac intraarticular injections, the evidence is moderate for short-term relief and limited for long-term relief. The evidence for radiofrequency neurotomy for sacroiliac joint pain is limited. The evidence for intradiscal electrothermal therapy is moderate in managing chronic discogenic low back pain, whereas for annuloplasty the evidence is limited. Among the various techniques utilized for percutaneous disc decompression, the evidence is moderate for short-term and limited for long-term relief for automated percutaneous lumbar discectomy, and percutaneous laser discectomy, whereas it is limited for nucleoplasty and for DeKompressor technology. For vertebral augmentation procedures, the evidence is moderate for both vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty. The evidence for spinal cord stimulation in failed back surgery syndrome and complex regional pain syndrome is strong for short-term relief and moderate for long-term relief. The evidence for implantable intrathecal infusion systems is strong for short-term relief and moderate for long-term relief.
These guidelines include the evaluation of evidence for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in managing chronic spinal pain and recommendations for managing spinal pain. However, these guidelines do not constitute inflexible treatment recommendations. These guidelines also do not represent a "standard of care."
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ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to assess the value of SPECT/CT imaging in patients with chronic spinal pain. METHODS: This was a retrospective consecutive study. Patients with chronic neck or back pain from outpatient spinal clinics with clinical features raising the possibility of a facetogenic pain generator and non-conclusive MRI/CT findings were included. Imaging was performed on a dual-headed, hybrid SPECT/CT γ-camera with a low-dose CT transmission scan acquired after the SPECT study. SPECT/CT studies were viewed in the coronal, axial, and sagittal planes and in 3-dimensional mode. Descriptive statistical analysis was performed. RESULTS: Seventy-two patients were included (37 females, 35 males, mean age of 53.9 years). There were 25 cervical spine scans and 49 lumbar spine scans. In the cervical spine group, 13 (52 %) patients had scintigraphically active cervical facet joint arthropathy and ten (36 %) had other pathology identified. Two thirds of patients diagnosed with facet joint arthropathy received steroid guided injections following their scans. In the lumbar spine group 34 (69.4 %) patients had scintigraphically active lumbar facet joint arthropathy and eight had other pathology identified. Twenty patients (58.8 %) diagnosed with facet joint arthropathy subsequently received steroid guided injections. CONCLUSIONS: Hybrid SPECT/CT imaging identified potential pain generators in 92 % of cervical spine scans and 86 % of lumbar spine scans. The scan precisely localised SPECT positive facet joint targets in 65 % of the referral population and a clinical decision to inject was made in 60 % of these cases.International Orthopaedics 02/2013; · 2.32 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Sacroiliac joint (SIJ) pain is an underappreciated source of mechanical low back pain, affecting between 15 and 30% of individuals with chronic, nonradicular pain. Predisposing factors for SIJ pain include true and apparent leg length discrepancy, older age, inflammatory arthritis, previous spine surgery, pregnancy and trauma. Compared with facet-mediated and discogenic low back pain, individuals with SIJ pain are more likely to report a specific inciting event, and experience unilateral pain below L5. Owing in part to its size and heterogeneity, the pain referral patterns of the SIJ are extremely variable. Although no single physical examination or historical feature can reliably identify a painful SIJ, studies suggest that a battery of three or more provocation tests can predict response to diagnostic blocks. Evidence supports both intra- and extra-articular causes for SIJ pain, with clinical studies demonstrating intermediate-term benefit for both intra- and extra-articular steroid injections. In those who fail to experience sustained relief from SIJ injections, radiofrequency denervation may provide significant relief lasting up to 1 year. This review covers all aspects of SIJ pain, with the treatment section being primarily focused on procedural interventions.Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics 01/2013; 13(1):99-116. · 2.96 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Determining epidural catheter placement and accurately depositing corticosteroids at the site of the pathology in adults with chronic back pain can be challenging. Fluoroscopy is considered the standard of care for guiding epidural catheter positioning and subsequent injection in patients receiving epidural corticosteroids, but the technique has some limitations. We hypothesized that electrophysiological stimulation using the Tsui test is feasible for determining the appropriate epidural catheter position in adults with chronic back pain receiving epidural corticosteroids. We conducted a prospective cohort study of 12 patients receiving epidural corticosteroid injections for chronic back pain. Anatomical landmarks and epidural needle positions were initially confirmed by fluoroscopy. Epidural catheter position was assessed according to sensory and motor responses, as described by Tsui et al. (Can J Anaesth 45: 640-644, 1998). The current was increased slowly from zero until muscle activity was visible or the current reached 10 mA. The catheter was then advanced until muscle responses occurred in the desired myotome. The test was deemed positive or negative according to the Tsui criteria. The anatomical level was confirmed by fluoroscopy prior to injection. Electrophysiological stimulation effectively established the appropriate epidural catheter position in 11 patients (92%). Epidural stimulation occurred at a mean (SD) threshold of 3.95 (3.35) mA. The kappa statistic between interventions was 0.65, indicating a substantial level of agreement. This study demonstrated that electrophysiological stimulation using the Tsui technique is feasible for epidural catheter positioning in adults with chronic back pain. It may optimize epidural steroid injection in this population.Canadian Anaesthetists? Society Journal 08/2013; · 2.31 Impact Factor