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Intraoperative Acupuncture as Part of a Multimodal Analgesic Regimen to Reduce Opioid Usage After Total Knee Arthroplasty: A Prospective Cohort Trial.

TitleIntraoperative Acupuncture as Part of a Multimodal Analgesic Regimen to Reduce Opioid Usage After Total Knee Arthroplasty: A Prospective Cohort Trial.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsCheng SI, Kelleher DC, DeMeo D, Zhong H, Birch G, Ast MP
JournalMed Acupunct
Volume34
Issue1
Pagination49-57
Date Published2022 Feb 01
ISSN1933-6586
Abstract

Objective: Given the U.S. opioid crisis, surgeons and anesthesiologists must collaborate to optimize nonopioid analgesics perioperatively. A common surgical procedure, total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is a critical target for opioid reduction and development of enhanced recovery protocols. Auricular therapy can help reduce pain and opioid analgesic use in the perioperative timeperiod, but intraoperative use for TKA has yet to be explored. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of integrating intraoperative auricular therapy as part of an opioid-sparing protocol for TKA. Materials and Methods: In this prospective cohort study, 41 patients undergoing primary unilateral TKA under neuraxial anesthesia received a standardized, opioid-free intraoperative protocol including electroauricular acupuncture. The primary outcome was the number of patients able to remain on a low-dose opioid regimen: ≤112.5 oral morphine equivalents. Additional outcomes included patient-reported pain scores, side-effects, and prior experience with acupuncture. Results: Of the 40 patients who completed the study, 26 (65%) maintained a low-dose opioid regimen, with 3 (7%) remaining opioid-free for 30 days. No subjects used opioids beyond 30 days. Mean pain scores were low at rest (Day 0: 3.4, standard deviation [SD] 2.4; Day 1: 2.4, SD 1.8) and moderate with movement (Day 0: 4.8, SD 2.6; Day 1: 5.1, SD 2.1). The most-common side-effects were dry mouth (43.2%), drowsiness (24.3%), and lightheadedness (24.3%). Conclusions: Incorporating intraoperative electroauricular acupuncture into an existing multimodal analgesia regimen is a feasible way to maintain a low-dose opioid regimen after TKA. This research was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as Clinical Trial Number: NCT#04084288.

DOI10.1089/acu.2021.0072
Alternate JournalMed Acupunct
PubMed ID35251437
PubMed Central IDPMC8886900