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The purpose of the review is to describe what is currently known about the mechanisms, incidence and risk factors for acute and chronic postcraniotomy pain. The review will also summarize the evidence supporting the prevention and management of acute and chronic postcraniotomy pain. RECENT
Current studies suggest acute and chronic pain is common in patients after craniotomy. Surgical and patient factors may influence the incidence and severity of pain and a multimodal approach to acute postcraniotomy pain is recommended. Although codeine and tramadol are frequently used in the postoperative period, research suggests morphine provides superior efficacy with a good safety profile. Local anesthesia with nerve blocks has not been shown to consistently reduce acute postoperative pain, though it has recently been demonstrated to dramatically reduce the incidence of chronic pain. Despite this, little is known about the mechanisms, prevention and treatment of chronic postcraniotomy pain.
Acute and chronic pain following craniotomy is frequent and underrecognized. Several surgical and patient risk factors predispose patients to pain following neurosurgery. Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms, predictors, prevention and optimal treatment of acute and chronic pain following craniotomy.
Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care, University of California, San Francisco, California, USA.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Current opinion in anaesthesiology
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