Friday, November 17, 2006

Optimum Management of Pre-amputation Pain Eliminates Phantom Pain at 6 Months

Patients scheduled for lower extremity amputation who receive optimum pain management before, during, and after surgery are unlikely to experience prolonged phantom limb pain.

Patients on optimized analgesia had lower scores on the Phantom pain Visual Analog Scale (VAS) and the Pain Rating Index - Affective (PRI) at all time points compared with controls. This effect was most pronounced in the group receiving preoperative epidural analgesia (group 1, P < .05) at 1 and 6 months.

At 6 months none of the 8 patients in group 1 had phantom pain, compared with 71% of 7 in group 5 (P < .007). There was no significant stump pain at 6 months in any group.

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