Publications by authors named "Hisham Kassem"

38 Publications

Canadian national hypoparathyroidism registry: an overview of hypoparathyroidism in Canada.

Endocrine 2021 Mar 2. Epub 2021 Mar 2.

McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Purpose: To evaluate the epidemiology, presentation and management of hypoparathyroidism in Canada. Hypoparathyroidism is associated with significant morbidity and poor quality of life. We present baseline results from the Canadian National Hypoparathyroidism Registry, a prospective observational study evaluating hypoparathyroidism in Canada.

Methods: Our study enrolled 130 patients with hypoparathyroidism. Patients were followed every 6 months with clinical and lab assessments. We present baseline data in this manuscript.

Results: Seventy percent (91/130) of patients had postsurgical hypoparathyroidism, 30% (39/130) of patients had nonsurgical hypoparathyroidism due to autoimmune, genetic or idiopathic causes, and a molecular diagnosis was confirmed in 11 of these 39 patients. Pseudohypoparathyroidism was confirmed in 4/39 patients, DiGeorge syndrome in 2/39 patients, Barakat syndrome with a mutation in the GATA3 gene in 1/39, and activating mutations of the CASR gene in 3/39 patients with nonsurgical hypoparathyroidism. Renal complications with nephrocalcinosis or nephrolithiasis were present in 27% (14/52) of patients with postsurgical disease and 17% (4/24) of patients with nonsurgical hypoparathyroidism. Basal ganglia calcification was noted on imaging in 15% (n = 5/34) of patients with postsurgical hypoparathyroidism and 37% (n = 7/19) of patients with nonsurgical hypoparathyroidism.

Conclusions: Hypercalciuria was more commonly seen in those with renal complications of nephrocalcinosis, nephrolithiasis or CKD, and hyperphosphatemia was more commonly seen in those with basal ganglia calcification. Hospitalization occurred in 28% of those with postsurgical hypoparathyroidism and 46% of those with nonsurgical hypoparathyroidism. Hypoparathyroidism is associated with significant morbidity. Effective strategies to reduce the short-and long-term complications of hypoparathyroidism need to be developed and evaluated.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12020-021-02629-wDOI Listing
March 2021

An Evidence-Based Review of Elagolix for the Treatment of Pain Secondary to Endometriosis.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):197-215

Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Berger, MD, PhD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Adamian, BS, Creighton University School of Medicine-Phoenixix Regional Campus, Phoenix, AZ. Miro, BS, Callan, BS, M. Patel, BS, Patel, BS, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ. Kassem, MD, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Kaye, MD, PhD, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This is a review of elagolix use for pain related to endometriosis. It summarizes the background and recent data available about the pathogenesis of endometriosis and pain that is secondary to this syndrome. It then reviews the evidence to support the use of elagolix and the indications for use.

Recent Findings: Endometriosis occurs in 10% of reproductive-age women and is a common source of chronic pelvic pain, infertility, and co-morbid disorders. It usually presents with some combination of dysmenorrhea, dyspareunia, chronic pelvic pain, and infertility. Treatment options may be surgical or hormonal. Traditional treatment is divided into medical and surgical. The latter, though effective, is reserved for surgical emergencies and patients failing medical management. Medical management with NSAIDs is usually limited in efficacy. It is generally based on hormonal suppression leading to atrophy of endometrial lesions. Elagolix (Orlissa) is a GnRH antagonist that suppressed the entire hypophysis-gonadal axis. Reduced levels of estrogen and progesterone lead to involution of the endometrial lesions and improvement in symptoms. Clinical trials showed that elagolix is effective in treating dysmenorrhea and non-menstrual pain that is secondary to endometriosis. It is well tolerated and has a relatively safe usage profile. Studies up to 12 months long showed continued efficacy and reduction in dysmenorrhea of up to 75%, with 50%-60% reduction in non-menstrual pain. Elagolix was found effective when compared to both placebo and alternative treatments.

Summary: Endometriosis is a common syndrome that causes significant pain, morbidity, and disability, as well as financial loss. Elagolix is an effective drug in treating the symptoms of endometriosis and is a relatively safe option. Phase 4 studies will be required to evaluate the safety and efficacy of long term chronic use.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901127PMC
October 2020

A Comprehensive Review of Slipping Rib Syndrome: Treatment and Management.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):189-196

Gress, BS, Charipova, BS, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Kassem, MD, Schwartz, DO, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Berger, MD, PhD, Hasoon, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Cornett, PhD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Kaye, MD, PhD, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review and update on advances in the understanding and treatment of slipping rib syndrome. It covers the physiology and pathophysiology at the basis of the syndrome, epidemiology and clinical presentation as well as diagnosis. It goes on to review the available literature to provide description and comparison of the available methods for alleviation.

Recent Findings: Slipping rib syndrome stems from irritation of intercostal nerves. It is caused by slipping of the costal cartilage and the resulting displacement of a false rib and pinning underneath the adjacent superior rib and nerve irritation. It is rare and spans genders and ages; most evidence about epidemiology is conflicting and mostly anecdotal. Risk factors include trauma and high intensity athletic activity. Presentation is of a sudden onset of pain with jerking motion; the pain can be localized, radiating or diffuse visceral. It is often alleviated by positions that offload the impinged nerve. Diagnosis is clinical, and can be aided by Hooking maneuver and dynamic ultrasound. Definitive diagnosis is with pain relief on nerve block, visualization of altered anatomy during surgery and relief after surgical correction. Initial treatment includes rest, ice and NSAIDs, as well as screening for co-morbid conditions, as well as local symptomatic relief. Injection therapy with local anesthetics and steroids can provide a diagnosis as well as symptomatic relief. Surgical correction remains the definitive treatment.

Summary: Slipping rib syndrome is a rare cause of chest pain that could be perceived as local or diffuse pain. Diagnosis is initially clinical and can be confirmed with nerve blocks and surgical visualization. Initial treatment is symptomatic and anti-inflammatory, and definitive treatment remains surgical. More recently, advanced surgical options have paved way for cure for previously hard to treat patients.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901126PMC
October 2020

Oral Muscle Relaxants for the Treatment of Chronic Pain Associated with Cerebral Palsy.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):142-162

Peck, MD, Noor, BS, Kassem, MD, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Crane, BS, McNally, BS, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Patel, BS, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ. Cornett, MD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences, Department of Anesthesiology, New Orleans, LA. Kaye, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive literature review of the available for treatment of oral muscle relaxants for cerebral palsy (CP) and associated chronic pain. It briefly describes the background and etiology of pain in CP and proceeds to review and weigh the available evidence for treatment for muscle relaxants.

Recent Findings: CP is a permanent, chronic, non-progressive neuromuscular and neurocognitive disorder of motor dysfunction that is diagnosed in infancy and is frequently (62% of patients) accompanied by chronic or recurrent muscular pain. Treatment of pain is crucial, and focuses mostly on treatment of spasticity through non-interventional techniques, surgery and medical treatment. Botulinum toxin injections provide temporary denervation, at the cost of repeated needle sticks. More recently, the use of oral muscle relaxants has gained ground and more evidence are available to evaluate its efficacy. Common oral muscle relaxants include baclofen, dantrolene and diazepam. Baclofen is commonly prescribed for spasticity in CP; however, despite year-long experience, there is little evidence to support its use and evidence from controlled trials are mixed. Dantrolene has been used for 30 years, and very little current evidence exists to support its use. Its efficacy is usually impacted by non-adherence due to difficult dosing and side-effects. Diazepam, a commonly prescribed benzodiazepine carries risks of CNS depression as well as addiction and abuse. Evidence supporting its use is mostly dated, but more recent findings support short-term use for pain control as well as enabling non-pharmacological interventions that achieve long term benefit but would otherwise not be tolerated. More recent options include cyclobenzaprine and tizanidine. Cyclobenzaprine carries a more significant adverse events profile, including CNS sedation; it was found to be effective, possible as effective as diazepam, however, it is not currently FDA approved for CP-related spasticity and further evidence is required to support its use. Tizanidine was shown to be very effective in a handful of small studies.

Summary: Muscle relaxants are an important adjunct in CP therapy and are crucial in treatment of pain, as well as enabling participation in other forms of treatments. Evidence exist to support their use, however, it is not without risk and further research is required to highlight proper dosing, co-treatments and patient selection.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901132PMC
October 2020

A Comprehensive Review and Update of the Use of Dexmedetomidine for Regional Blocks.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):121-141

Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Berger, MD, PhD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Kaye, MD, PhD, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Virgen, BS, Alattar, BS, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ. Jung, BS, Georgetown University School of Medicine, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC. Kassem, MD, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Shehata, MD, Ain Shams University, Department of Anesthesiology, Cairo, Egypt. Elhassan, MD, Desert Regional Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Palm Springs, CA. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This evidence-based systematic review will focus on the use of dexmedetomidine and its role as adjuvant anesthetics in regional blocks to help better guide physicians in their practice. This review will cover background and mechanism of dexmedetomidine as well as the use in various regional blocks.

Recent Findings: Local anesthetics are preferred for nerve blocks over opioids; however, both due come with its own side effects. Local anesthetics may be toxic as they disrupt cell membrane and proteins, but by using adjuvants such as dexmedetomidine, that can prolong sensory and motor blocks can reduce total amount of local anesthetics needed. Dexmedetomidine is an alpha-2-adrenergic agonist used as additive for regional nerve block. It has a relatively low side effect profile and have been researched in various regional blocks (intrathecal, paravertebral, axillary, infraclavicular brachial plexus, interscalene). Dexmedetomidine shows promising results as adjuvant anesthetics in most regional blocks.

Summary: Many studies have been done and many show promising results for the use of dexmedetomidine in regional blocks. It may significantly increase in duration of sensory and motor blocks that correlates with lower pain scores and less need of morphine in various regional blocks.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901136PMC
October 2020

Interventional Approaches to Pain and Spasticity Related to Cerebral Palsy.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):108-120

Peck, MD, Kassem, MD, Berger, MD, PhD, Herman, DO, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Lee, BS, Creighton University School of Medicine, Phoenix, Arizona. Robinson, BS, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington DC. Cornett, PhD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Department of Anesthesiology, New Orleans, LA. Jung, BS, Georgetown University School of Medicine, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC. Kaye, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This review will cover seminal and emerging evidence on interventional therapy chronic pain in cerebral palsy (CP). It will cover the background and burden of disease, present the current options, and then weigh the evidence that is available to support interventional therapy and the current indications.

Recent Findings: CP is a permanent posture and movement disorder from in-utero brain development defects with a 3-4/1,000 incidence in the US. The cost of care for each child is estimated at $921,000. Pain in CP is attributed to musculoskeletal deformities, spasticity, increased muscle tone, dislocations, and GI dysfunction. First-line treatments include physical and occupational therapy and oral pharmacological agents; however, a significant amount of patients remain refractory to these and require further therapy. Injection therapy includes botulinum toxin A (BTA) injections and intrathecal baclofen. BTA injections were shown to control chronic pain effectively and are FDA approved for spastic pain; intra-thecal baclofen, in contrast, was only shown to improve comfort and quality of life with a focus on the pain. Surgical intervention includes selection dorsal rhizotomy (SDR). It may increase range of motion and quality of life and reduce spasticity and pain; however, most evidence is anecdotal, and more research is required.

Summary: Interventional therapy, including injection and surgical, is the last line of therapy for chronic pain in CP. It extends the possibility of therapy in hard-to-treat individuals; however, more data is required to provide strong evidence to the efficacy of these treatments and guide proper patient selection.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901135PMC
October 2020

An Evidence Based Review of Epidurolysis for the Management of Epidural Adhesions.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Oct;50(4 Suppl 1):74-90

Urits, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Berger, MD, PhD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Schwartz, DO, Kassem, MD, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Brinkman, BS, Foster, BS, Miro, BS, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ. Kaye, MD, PhD, Departments of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neurosciences, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA. Manchikanti, MD, Pain Management Centers of America, Paducah, KY. Viswanath, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This review presents epidurolysis as a procedure to alleviate pain and disability from epidural adhesions. It reviews novel and groundbreaking evidence, describing the background, indications, benefits and adverse events from this procedure in an effort to provide healthcare experts with the data required to decide on an intervention for their patients.

Recent Findings: Epidural adhesions (EA) or epidural fibrosis (EF) is defined as non-physiologic scar formation secondary to a local inflammatory reaction provoked by tissue trauma in the epidural space. Often, it is a sequelae of surgical spine intervention or instrumentation. The cost associated with chronic post-operative back pain has been reported to be up to nearly $12,500 dollars per year; this, coupled with the increasing prevalence of chronic lower back pain and the subsequent increase in surgical management of back pain, renders EF a significant cost and morbidity in the U.S. Though risk factors leading to the development of EA are not well established, epidural fibrosis has been reported to be the culprit in up to 46% of cases of Failed Back Surgery Syndrome (FBSS), a chronic pain condition found in up to 20-54% of patients who receive back surgery. Moreover, EF has also been associated with lumbar radiculopathy after lumbar disc surgery. Epidurolysis is defined as the mechanical dissolution of epidural fibrotic scar tissue for persistent axial spine or radicular pain due to epidural fibrosis that is refractory to conservative therapy Endoscopic lysis of adhesions is a procedural technique which has been shown to improve chronic back pain in one-third to one-half of patients with clinically symptomatic fibrous adhesions. Here we review some of the novel evidence that supports this procedure in EA and FBSS.

Summary: The literature concerning epidurolysis in the management of epidural adhesions is insufficient. Prospective studies, including randomized controlled trials and observational studies, have suggested epidurolysis to be effective in terms of pain reduction, functional improvement, and patient satisfaction scores. Observational studies report epidurolysis as a well-tolerated, safe procedure. Current evidence suggests that epidurolysis may be used as an effective treatment modality for epidural adhesions. Nonetheless, further high quality randomized controlled studies assessing the safety and efficacy of epidurolysis in the management of epidural adhesions is needed.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901122PMC
October 2020

A Comprehensive Review and Update of Post-surgical Cutaneous Nerve Entrapment.

Curr Pain Headache Rep 2021 Feb 5;25(2):11. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review of the literature regarding post-surgical cutaneous nerve entrapment, epidemiology, pathophysiology, and clinical presentation. It focuses mainly on nerve entrapment leading to chronic pain and the available therapies.

Recent Findings: Cutaneous nerve entrapment is not an uncommon result (up to 30% of patients) of surgery and could lead to significant, difficult to treat chronic pain. Untreated, entrapment can lead to neuropathy and damage to enervated structures and musculature, and significant morbidity and financial loss. Nerve entrapment is defined as pressure neuropathy from chronic compression. It causes changes to all layers of the nerve tissue. It is most significantly associated with hernia repair and other procedures employing a Pfannenstiel incision. The initial insult is usually incising of the nerve, followed by formation of a neuroma, incorporation of the nerve during closing, or constriction from adhesions. The three most commonly involved nerves are the iliohypogastric, ilioinguinal, and genitofemoral nerves. Cutaneous abdominal nerve entrapment could occur during thoracoabdominal surgery. The presentation of nerve entrapment usually involved post-surgical pain in the territory innervated by the trapped nerve, possibly with radiation that tracks the nerve course. Once a suspected neuropathy is identified, it can be diagnosed with relief in pain after a nerve block has been instilled. Treatment is usually started with pharmaceutical solutions, topical first and oral if those fail. Most patients require escalation to a second line of treatment and see good result with injection therapy. Those that require further escalation can choose between ablation and surgical therapies. Post-surgical nerve entrapment is not uncommon and causes serious morbidity and financial loss. It is underdiagnosed and thus undertreated. Preventing nerve entrapment is the best treatment; when it does occur, options include topical and oral analgesics, nerve blocks, ablation therapy, and repeat surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11916-020-00924-1DOI Listing
February 2021

Baricitinib for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

Reumatologia 2020 23;58(6):407-415. Epub 2020 Dec 23.

Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, Arizona, United States.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a common inflammatory disease with several implications on health, disability and economy. Conventional treatment for RA centers on anti-inflammatory drugs and specific targeting of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and interleukin 6 (IL-6). Baricitinib is a novel, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved, once daily oral drug that is effective in combination with current treatment and results in significantly reduced symptoms with good safety profile. Further studies are required to find rare side effects and evaluate the long term efficacy in disease modulation and patient symptom reduction. This is a comprehensive review of the literature on baricitinib for the treatment of RA. This review provides an update on the pathophysiology, diagnosis and conventional treatment of RA, then proceeds to introduce baricitinib and the data that exists to support or refute its use in RA. The presented study also indicated clinical trials confirming the effectiveness of baricitinib in this indication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5114/reum.2020.102006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7792534PMC
December 2020

Use of Dexmedetomidine With Dexamethasone for Extended Pain Relief in Adductor Canal/Popliteal Nerve Block During Achilles Tendon Repair.

Cureus 2020 Dec 5;12(12):e11917. Epub 2020 Dec 5.

Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Portsmouth Anesthesia Associates, Portsmouth, USA.

The use of regional anesthetic techniques in the peri-operative period has increased as a means to improve analgesia and patient outcomes. Traditionally, various local anesthetics are used and addition of adjuncts such as epinephrine, clonidine, and dexamethasone has shown to prolong the block effect. There has been ongoing research to support the prolongation of a regional block with the addition of dexamethasone and dexmedetomidine (Dex-Dex), providing analgesia for multiple days. We present a case of a 35-year-old female who underwent an Achilles tendon repair with an adductor/popliteal nerve block. Both dexmedetomidine and dexamethasone were added to the local anesthetic mixture with substantial postoperative analgesic control. The patient also did not require any supplemental opioid medication. This case emphasizes the proposed synergistic effect of dexmedetomidine and dexamethasone when added to the local anesthesia injectate for lower extremity peripheral nerve blocks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7759/cureus.11917DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7785491PMC
December 2020

A comprehensive review of the treatment and management of Charcot spine.

Ther Adv Musculoskelet Dis 2020 17;12:1759720X20979497. Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Department of Anesthesiology, LSUHSC School of Medicine, Shreveport, Louisiana, USA.

Charcot spine arthropathy (CSA), a result of reduced afferent innervation, is an occurrence of Charcot joint, a progressive, degenerative disorder in vertebral joints, related mostly to spinal cord injury. The repeated microtrauma is a result of a lack of muscle protection and destroys cartilage, ligaments, and disc spaces, leading to vertebrae destruction, joint instability, subluxation, and dislocation. Joint destruction compresses nerve roots, resulting in pain, paresthesia, sensory loss, dysautonomia, and spasticity. CSA presents with back pain, spinal deformity and instability, and audible spine noises during movement. Autonomic dysfunction includes bowel and bladder dysfunction. It is slowly progressive and usually diagnosed at a late stage, usually, on average, 20 years after the first initial insult. Diagnosis is rarely clinical related to the nature of nonspecific symptoms and requires imaging with computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Conservative management focuses on the prevention of fractures and the progression of deformities. This includes bed rest, orthoses, and braces. These could be useful in elderly or frail patients who are not candidates for surgical treatment, or in minimally symptomatic patients, such as patients with spontaneous fusion leading to a stable spine. Symptomatic treatment is offered for autonomic dysfunction, such as anticholinergics for bladder control. Most patients require surgical treatment. Spinal fusion is achieved with open, minimally-open (MOA) or minimally-invasive (MIS) approaches. The gold standard is open circumferential fusion; data is lacking to determine the superiority of open or MIS approaches. Patients usually improve after surgery; however, the rarity of the condition makes it difficult to estimate outcomes. This is a review of the latest and seminal literature about the treatment and chronic management of Charcot spine. The review includes the background of the syndrome, clinical presentation, and diagnosis, and compares the different treatment options that are currently available.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1759720X20979497DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7750571PMC
December 2020

Treatment and Management of Twelfth Rib Syndrome: A Best Practices Comprehensive Review.

Pain Physician 2021 Jan;24(1):E45-E50

Department of Anesthesiology, LSUHSC School of Medicine, Shreveport, LA; Department of Anesthesiology, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE; Department of Anesthesiology, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ; Valley Pain Consultants-Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ.

Background: Twelfth rib syndrome, or slipping of the 12th rib, is an often overlooked cause for chronic chest, back, flank, and abdominal pain from irritation of the 12th intercostal nerve. Diagnosis is clinical and follows the exclusion of other causes of pain. This syndrome is usually accompanied by long-suffering, consequent psychiatric comorbidities, and increased health care costs, which are secondary to the delayed diagnosis.

Objectives: This manuscript is a review of twelfth rib syndrome and its management options. The review provides etiology, pathophysiology, and epidemiology of twelfth rib syndrome. Additionally, diagnosis and current options for treatment and management are presented.

Study Design: This is a narrative review of twelfth rib syndrome.

Setting: A database review.

Methods: A PubMed search was conducted to ascertain seminal literature regarding twelfth rib syndrome.

Results: Conservative treatment is usually the first line, including local heat or ice packs, rest, and oral over-the-counter analgesics. Transcutaneous stimulation and 12th intercostal nerve cryotherapy have also been described with some success. Nerve blocks can additionally be tried and are usually effective in the immediate term; there is a paucity of evidence to suggest long-term efficacy. Surgical removal of all or part of the 12th rib and possibly the 11th rib, as well as the next line of therapy, may provide long-lasting relief of pain.

Limitations: Further large scale clinical studies are needed to assess the most effective management of twelfth rib syndrome.

Conclusions: Twelfth rib syndrome is usually diagnosed late and causes significant morbidity and suffering. The actual epidemiology is unclear given the difficulty of diagnosis. Nerve blocks and surgical rib resection appear to be effective in treating this syndrome, however, further evidence is required to properly evaluate them. Familiarity with this syndrome is crucial in reaching a prompter diagnosis.
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January 2021

A Comprehensive Review of Over the Counter Treatment for Chronic Low Back Pain.

Pain Ther 2020 Nov 4. Epub 2020 Nov 4.

Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants-Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Purpose Of The Review: Chronic low back pain (CLBP) is a major contributor to societal disease burden and years lived with disability. Nonspecific low back pain (LBP) is attributed to physical and psychosocial factors, including lifestyle factors, obesity, and depression. Mechanical low back pain occurs related to repeated trauma to or overuse of the spine, intervertebral disks, and surrounding tissues. This causes disc herniation, vertebral compression fractures, lumbar spondylosis, spondylolisthesis, and lumbosacral muscle strain.

Recent Findings: A systematic review of relevant literature was conducted. CENTRAL, MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and two clinical trials registry databases up to 24 June 2015 were included in this review. Search terms included: low back pain, over the counter, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID), CLBP, ibuprofen, naproxen, acetaminophen, disk herniation, lumbar spondylosis, vertebral compression fractures, spondylolisthesis, and lumbosacral muscle strain. Over-the-counter analgesics are the most frequently used first-line medication for LBP, and current guidelines indicate that over-the-counter medications should be the first prescribed treatment for non-specific LBP. Current literature suggests that NSAIDs and acetaminophen as well as antidepressants, muscle relaxants, and opioids are effective treatments for CLBP. Recent randomized controlled trials also evaluate the benefit of buprenorphine, tramadol, and strong opioids such as oxycodone. This systematic review discusses current evidence pertaining to non-prescription treatment options for chronic low back pain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40122-020-00209-wDOI Listing
November 2020

An Evidence-Based Review of Galcanezumab for the Treatment of Migraine.

Neurol Ther 2020 Dec 3;9(2):403-417. Epub 2020 Oct 3.

Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University Health Shreveport, Shreveport, LA, USA.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review of the current literature on the usage of galcanezumab for migraine treatment. It reviews the biology, pathophysiology, epidemiology, diagnosis, and conventional treatment of migraines, then compares the literature available for galcanezumab with historical treatment options.

Recent Findings: Migraine is a common headache disorder and constitutes a significant source of distress from both a personal and societal perspective. Conventional treatment includes abortive and preventive treatment. Treatment options are limited and may be only partially or minimally effective in some of the population. Recent evidence points to metabolic changes in the brain as possible causes of migraine, via reduced available energy or a spiking need for it, resulting in a relative insufficiency. This leads to trigeminocervical complex (TCC) activation and a headache episode, modulated by calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). Galcanezumab (Emgality) is a monoclonal antibody targeting CGRP that is given in a monthly injection for the prevention of migraines. Its safety was previously shown in phase 1 and 2 trials, and recent phase 3 trials showed efficacy, with up to 50% reduction in monthly migraine days and improved functional capacity in migraineurs. Studies show that the drug is well tolerated and safe. Migraine headache is a common neurological syndrome that causes great pain and suffering. Treatment options today are limited. Galcanezumab does not prevent migraines, but it is effective in decreasing their frequency and length. It is also much better tolerated than the currently existing therapies. While it is unlikely to provide monotherapy for migraines, it is a novel therapy that may be added for cases of severe or frequent migraines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40120-020-00214-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7606392PMC
December 2020

An evidence-based review of neuromodulation for the treatment and management of refractory angina.

Best Pract Res Clin Anaesthesiol 2020 Sep 7;34(3):517-528. Epub 2020 Aug 7.

Louisiana State University Health Shreveport, Department of Anesthesiology, Shreveport, LA, USA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, USA; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE, USA; University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Angina pectoris is defined as substernal chest pain that is typically exacerbated by exertion, stress, or other exposures. There are various methods of treatment for angina. Lifestyle modification and pharmacological management are considered as conservative treatments. If these medications do not result in the resolution of pain, more invasive approaches are an option, like coronary revascularization. Refractory angina (RA) is differentiated from acute or chronic angina based on the persistence of symptoms despite conventional therapies. Overall, the prevalence of RA is estimated to be 5%-15% in patients with coronary artery disease, which can account for up to 1,500,000 current cases and 100,000 new cases in the United States per year. Spinal cord stimulation treatment is a viable option for patients who are suffering from RA pain and are either not candidates for revascularization surgery or are currently not being well managed on more traditional treatments. Many studies show a positive result.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bpa.2020.08.006DOI Listing
September 2020

Use of cannabidiol (CBD) for the treatment of chronic pain.

Best Pract Res Clin Anaesthesiol 2020 Sep 2;34(3):463-477. Epub 2020 Jul 2.

University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ, USA; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE, USA; LSUHSC, Department of Anesthesiology, Shreveport, LA, USA; Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Chronic pain can be recurrent or constant pain that lasts for longer than 3 months and can result in disability, suffering, and a physical disturbance. Related to the complex nature of chronic pain, treatments have a pharmacological and non-pharmacological approach. Due to the opioid epidemic, alternative therapies have been introduced, and components of the plant Cannabis Sativa, Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) have gained recent interest as a choice of treatment. The exact mechanism for CBD is currently unknown, but unlike the CBD's psychoactive counterpart, THC, the side effects of CBD itself have been shown to be overall much more benign. The current pharmaceutical products for the treatment of chronic pain are known as nabiximols, and they contain a ratio of THC combined with CBD, which has been promising. This review focuses on the treatment efficacy of CBD, THC: CBD-based treatments for chronic pain and adverse events with each.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bpa.2020.06.004DOI Listing
September 2020

The Utility of Percutaneous Balloon Kyphoplasty for Treatment of Traumatic Vertebral Compression Fracture to Prevent Opioid Dependence in a Young Opioid-Dependent Patient.

Cureus 2020 Aug 14;12(8):e9733. Epub 2020 Aug 14.

Pain Management, Valley Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, USA.

Vertebral compression fractures are often found in the elderly population with known risk factors. Less commonly, they may occur in otherwise healthy patients following traumatic falls and can cause significant pain requiring opioid therapy. This case emphasizes the use of percutaneous balloon kyphoplasty as an effective treatment strategy in a young opioid-dependent patient as a means to support the return to baseline functionality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7759/cureus.9733DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7489569PMC
August 2020

The Role of COVID-19 in Shaping the Experiences of Pain Medicine Fellowship Training.

Pain Physician 2020 08;23(4S):S463-S464

Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants, Phoenix, AZ; Department of Anesthesiology, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ; Department of Anesthesiology, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE.

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August 2020

Tarlov cysts in a 49-year-old woman presenting with bilateral lower-extremity radiculopathy: A case report.

Case Rep Womens Health 2020 Oct 12;28:e00248. Epub 2020 Aug 12.

Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, LA, United States of America.

Tarlov cysts are an uncommon and often incidentally noted source of low back pain in women. Because these cysts can be asymptomatic, they can be overlooked on radiological imaging. This case is of a 49-year-old woman who presented with a chronic history of low back pain and bilateral radiculopathy who on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was found to have multiple Tarlov cysts. This case illustrates the need for large observational studies to show the incidence of Tarlov cysts as a cause of low back pain in women.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.crwh.2020.e00248DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7451826PMC
October 2020

A Review of Patisiran (ONPATTRO®) for the Treatment of Polyneuropathy in People with Hereditary Transthyretin Amyloidosis.

Neurol Ther 2020 Dec 12;9(2):301-315. Epub 2020 Aug 12.

Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants-Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Hereditary variant transthyretin amyloidosis (ATTRv) is a rare genetic defect that affects about 5000-10,000 people worldwide, causing amyloidosis secondary to misfolding of mutant transthyretin (TTR) protein fibrils. TTR mutations can cause protein deposits in many extracellular regions of organs, but those deposits in cardiac and axonal cells are the primary cause of this clinical syndrome. Treatment options are limited, but new drugs are being developed. Patisiran, a novel drug, is a liposomal siRNA against TTR that specifically targets this protein, reducing the accumulation of TTR in tissues, with subsequent improvement in both neuropathy and cardiac function. Patisiran is likely to serve as a prototype for the development of further intelligent drug solutions for use in targeted therapy. In this review we summarize the evidence currently available on the treatment of polyneuropathy in people with ATTRv with patisiran. We review the evidence on its efficacy, safety, and indications of use, citing novel and seminal papers on these subjects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40120-020-00208-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7606409PMC
December 2020

Naldemedine for the Use of Management of Opioid Induced Constipation.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Jul;50(3):97-118

Urits, Berger, Hasoon, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Patel, Jung, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Cornwall Kiernan, Joseph Clay, Viswanath, University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ, Monteferrante, Viswanath, Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE, Kassem, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL, Kaye, Louisiana State University Shreveport, Department of Anesthesiology, Shreveport, LA, Kaye, Viswanath, Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, University of the Pacific, Department of Pharmacy Practice, Stockton, CA, Viswanath, Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ.

Purpose Of Review: Opioid medications are a pillar of acute and chronic analgesia, though their use is often accompanied by side-effects, such as opioid-induced constipation. Unfortunately, tolerance rarely develops to this untoward side effect. This review presents the background, evidence, and indications for the use of Naldemedine (Brand name Symproic 0.2 mg tablets) to treat opioid-induced constipation.

Recent Findings: Opioids are often used for the treatment of acute and chronic analgesia. Outside of the central effect they exert, they also interact with peripheral receptors, resulting in opioid-induced constipation, the commonest of side effects of chronic opioid usage. Complications include colonic distention, ileus, perforation, and can progress to other serious bowel complications, which can result in hospitalization and fatal events.For the most part, laxatives and other anti-constipation therapies are often inefficient and require intervention directed at the root cause, such as peripheral mu receptor agonists, including methylnaltrexone, naloxegol, and naldemedine. Naldemedine is the most recent to gain FDA approval of the group.An antagonist of Mu, Kappa, and Delta peripheral receptors, Naldemedine, is the only drug to counteract all three receptor classes. It was shown to be both safe and effective when compared with placebo. No data exists to compare its efficacy to that of other members of the group.

Summary: Opioids are frequently used in the management of acute and chronic pain. The most common of the side effects is opioid-induced constipation, secondary to the peripheral activity of opioids. Naldemedine is an FDA-approved, once-daily oral tablet that counteracts this side effect by antagonizing mu, kappa, and delta-opioid receptors and has been shown to be safe and effective. Further investigation including head-to-head clinical trials are required to evaluate the relative efficacy of naldemedine compare with other peripheral opiate receptor antagonists.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7377540PMC
July 2020

A Comprehensive Update of Lofexidine for the Management of Opioid Withdrawal Symptoms.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 Jul;50(3):76-96

Urits, MD, Berger, MD, PhD, Hasoon, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Patel, Won Jung, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Zusman, Kassem, MD, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Virgen, Mousa, Viswanath, MD, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Department of Anesthesiology, Phoenix, AZ. Kaye, MD, PhD, Viswanath, MD, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, MD, Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ; Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review of the literature regarding the use of Lofexidine for opiate withdrawal symptoms. It covers the background and necessity of withdrawal programs and the management of withdrawal symptoms and then covers the existing evidence of the use of Lofexidine for this purpose.

Recent Findings: Opiate abuse leads to significant pain and suffering. However, withdrawal is difficult and often accompanied by withdrawal symptoms and renewed cravings. These symptoms are driven mostly by signaling in the locus coeruleus and the mesolimbic system and a rebound increase in noradrenaline, producing symptoms such as anxiety, gastrointestinal upset, and tension. Lofexidine, an alpha-2 agonist, can be used to manage acute withdrawal symptoms before starting maintenance treatment with either methadone or buprenorphine. Lofexidine, if FDA approved for management of withdrawal symptoms and has been proved to be both effective and safe.

Summary: Opiate addiction is increasing and plaguing the western world and specifically the U.S. It takes a large toll on both a personal and societal level and carries a high cost. Withdrawal is difficult, both related to withdrawal symptoms and renewed cravings. Lofexidine has been shown to be effective in reducing the former and could potentially aid in recovery and withdrawal.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7377538PMC
July 2020

Cannabis Use and its Association with Psychological Disorders.

Psychopharmacol Bull 2020 May;50(2):56-67

Urits, Berger, Hasoon, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Gress, Charipova, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC. Li, Medical College of Wisconsin, Wauwatosa, WI. Cornett, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Department of Anesthesiology, New Orleans, LA. Kassem, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Miami Beach, FL. Kaye, Louisiana State University Health Shreveport, Department of Anesthesiology, Shreveport, LA. Viswanath, Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ. University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ. Creighton University School of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Omaha, NE.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review of the association between cannabis use and psychological disorders. It reviews the latest and seminal evidence that is available and attempts to conclude the strength of such association.

Recent Findings: Cannabis is a flowering plant with psychoactive properties, attributed to cannabinoids that naturally occur within the plant. These act through the CB1 and CB2 receptors to inhibit GABA and glutamate release, as well through other forms of neuromodulation through the modulation of the endocannabinoid system (eCBs); a system that is otherwise involved in different pathways, including reward, memory, learning, and pain. Recent societal changes have increased the use of both medical and recreational cannabis. Patients with mental illness are considered more vulnerable and are prone to reward-seeking behavior. Cannabis use disorder (CUD) has been shown to have an increased prevalence in individuals with mental illness, creating an explosive cocktail. Approximately 1 in 4 patients with schizophrenia are also diagnosed with CUD. Cannabis use is associated with 2-4 times the likelihood of developing psychosis in healthy individuals. It has also been associated with multiple poor prognostic factors in schizophrenia, as well as in patients with a history of psychosis who do not meet diagnostic criteria for schizophrenia. Cannabis has been linked with anxiety; THC has been shown to elicit anxiety; however, anxiety is also a trigger for cannabis use. However, a recent large meta-analysis did not find a convincing link between cannabis and anxiety. This was reiterated in a recent epidemiological study that did not find such a correlation; however, it did identify a link between cannabis use, substance disorder, alcohol use disorder, drug use disorder, and nicotine dependence. Similarly, contradicting data exists regarding the link of depression and cannabis use.

Summary: Cannabis use is increasing with recent societal shifts; however, its interaction with mental health is less well understood. CUD is highly prevalent in individuals with mental health disorders, especially those with other substance abuse disorders. There is evidence to support that cannabis use may trigger and worsen psychosis and schizophrenia. The link with depression and anxiety is less clear and needs further investigation. Personality disorder is linked with substance use disorder and shares similar risk factors with CUD.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7255842PMC
May 2020

A Review of the Recent Findings in Minimally Invasive Treatment Options for the Management of Occipital Neuralgia.

Neurol Ther 2020 Dec 2;9(2):229-241. Epub 2020 Jun 2.

Department of Anesthesiology, University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Occipital neuralgia (ON) is unilateral or bilateral neuralgia in the dermatomal nerve distribution of the greater, lesser or third occipital nerves and is a very common presentation of neuropathic pain. ON, although common and well defined, is still a poorly understood pain syndrome. It often requires invasive treatment for long term and significant pain alleviation; however, the evidence supporting different options is still limited. Several minimally invasive techniques have proven to be efficacious and safe, and the selection depends mostly on response to nerve blocks, patient choice and provider preference. This is a comprehensive review of the latest and seminal literature available about occipital neuralgia and currently available minimally invasive treatment options. It covers the anatomical and physiologic biology at the base of neuralgia, the presentation and diagnostic process. It then reviews the available literature to provide description and comparison of the available methods for alleviation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40120-020-00197-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7606364PMC
December 2020

The role of clinical pharmacology in enhanced recovery after surgery protocols: a comprehensive review.

Anaesthesiol Intensive Ther 2020 ;52(2):154-164

Valley Anaesthesiology and Pain Consultants - Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, United States.

Clinical pharmacology has had an enormous impact in the development of anaesthesia practice. Improvement in drugs and the use of long-acting local anaesthetics in peri-pheral nerve blocks have reduced hospital stays and opioid consumption in both the hospital and ambulatory surgery settings. Ambulatory surgery centres are revolutionary because they provide an alternative to hospital-based outpatient services and generally provide favourable patient outcomes. Enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) was established in 2001 to improve patient care and increase the number of available ambulatory surgery centres. ERAS protocols arose out of the need to decrease physiological and psychological surgical stress with an emphasis on clinical pharmacology and recovery data. Overall, ERAS aims to reduce unfavourable sequelae, shorten the length of hospital stay, reduce costs, and improve patient recovery. Surgical subspecialties have embraced the philosophy of ERAS, creating unique protocols to meet their patients' needs. There are ERAS guidelines available for nearly every specialty in healthcare, and ambulatory surgery is no exception. The goal of ERAS guidelines is to reduce patient recovery times and improve patient outcomes, with a heavy emphasis on clinical pharmacology data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5114/ait.2020.95020DOI Listing
January 2020

Postherpetic Neuralgia: Current Evidence on the Topical Film-Forming Spray with Bupivacaine Hydrochloride and a Review of Available Treatment Strategies.

Adv Ther 2020 05 15;37(5):2003-2016. Epub 2020 Apr 15.

Valley Anesthesiology and Pain Consultants, Envision Physician Services, Phoenix, AZ, USA.

Purpose Of Review: This is a comprehensive review of the literature about the use of bupivacaine hydrochloride for the treatment of post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN). It briefly reviews the background, biology, diagnosis and conventional treatment for PHN, and then introduces and compares the recent evidence for the use of topical bupivacaine.

Recent Findings: PHN is defined by pain lasting 90 days or more after the initial presentation of herpes zoster ("Shingles", HZ) rash and is the most common complication of this disease. A product of re-activation of the Varicella-Zoster virus (VZV), HZ is diagnosed more than 1 million times annually in the United States. Approximately 20% of patients with HZ will experience PHN and will continue to suffer intermittent neuropathic symptoms, including itching and pain, that is sharp, stabbing, throbbing or burning, with the pain localized to the site of their original rash. This long-lasting pain compares with the severity of long-standing rheumatics and osteo-arthritis and is accompanied by severe allodynia causing significant suffering, and a financial burden that is manifested in both healthcare costs and loss of quality-adjusted life years. Prevention of PHN may be achieved with the Zoster vaccine, although there is still a large segment of unvaccinated population. Moreover, the Zoster vaccine is not always effective for prevention. Current treatment includes medical (systemic tricyclic antidepressants, anticonvulsants and opioids, topical lidocaine and capsaicin) and interventional (subcutaneous Botox injections, nerve blocks and nerve stimulation) therapies. These therapies are not always effective, and each carries their own profile of side effects and risks. Moreover, up to 50% of patients with PHN are refractory to management. Recent evidence is emerging to support the use of topical local anesthetics for the treatment of PHN. Two small studies recently found topical lidocaine spray to be effective in treating paroxysmal pain attacks associated with PHN. Bupivacaine is a longer-lasting local anesthetic, and a film-forming formulation allows easy and durable application to the affected skin. Recent studies show that topical film-forming bupivacaine is safe and as effective as lidocaine for the treatment of PHN. PHN is an important though common complication of HZ and can cause long-lasting pain and disability. Current treatment for PNH is limited by efficacy and safety profiles of individual therapies. Recent evidence points to topical local anesthetics as an effective and safe alternative to conventional therapy. Film-forming bupivacaine may offer a durable and safe option for this otherwise difficult to treat syndrome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12325-020-01335-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7467465PMC
May 2020

Central Neuropathic Mechanisms in Pain Signaling Pathways: Current Evidence and Recommendations.

Adv Ther 2020 05 10;37(5):1946-1959. Epub 2020 Apr 10.

Department of Pain Medicine, Pain Specialty Group, Newington, NH, USA.

Purpose: This is a comprehensive review of the current literature on central neuropathic pain mechanisms that is secondary to spinal cord injury. It reviews recent and seminal findings on the pathophysiology, diagnosis, and treatment and compares treatment options and recommendations.

Recent Findings: Neuropathic pain (NP) is a common complication of spinal cord injury (SCI). Chronicity of NP is attributed to increased abundance of inflammatory mediators and ion channel dysfunction leading to afferent nerve sensitization; nerve damage and nerve-glia cross talk have also been implicated. Conventional treatment is medical and has had limited success. Recent studies have made headway in identifying novel biomarkers, including microRNA and psychosocial attributes that can predict progress from SCI to chronic NP (CNP). Recent advances have provided evidence of efficacy for two promising drugs. Baclofen was able to provide good, long-lasting pain relief. Ziconotide, a voltage-gated calcium channel blocker, was studied in a small trial and was able to provide good analgesia in most participants. However, several participants had to be withdrawn because of worrisome creatine phosphokinase (CPK) elevations, and further studies are required to define its safety profile. Non-medical interventions include brain sensitization and biofeedback techniques. These methods have recently had encouraging results, albeit preliminary. Case reports of non-conventional techniques, such as hypnosis, were also reported. CNP is a common complication of SCI and is a prevalent disorder with significant morbidity and disability. Conventional medical treatment is limited in efficacy. Recent studies identified baclofen and ziconotide as possible new therapies, alongside non-medical interventions. Further research into the pathophysiology is required to identify further therapy candidates. A multidisciplinary approach, including psychosocial support, medical and non-medical interventions, is likely needed to achieve therapeutic effects in this difficult to treat syndrome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12325-020-01334-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7467462PMC
May 2020

Emergence Delirium in Perioperative Pediatric Care: A Review of Current Evidence and New Directions.

Adv Ther 2020 05 9;37(5):1897-1909. Epub 2020 Apr 9.

Department of Anesthesiology, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE, USA.

Emergence delirium (ED) is defined as psychomotor agitation and delirium that typically occurs within 45 min from emergence of anesthesia. Preoperative patient conditions such as anxiety and confusion are risk factors for the development of postoperative ED. Common signs of ED are general non-purposeful resistive movements such as kicking, pulling, flailing as well as lack of eye contact and general lack of awareness of surroundings. The use of volatile anesthetics (VA) is contributory, while the use of total intravenous anesthetic techniques (TIVA) may help to reduce the incidence of emergence delirium. Furthermore, various pharmacologic strategies and alternatively non-pharmacologic strategies have been demonstrated to further diminish its occurrence. The objective of this manuscript is to provide a comprehensive review of anesthetic considerations for pediatric ED and to provide an update on techniques that have been found to be effective in reducing the overall risk of developing postoperative ED in pediatric patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12325-020-01317-xDOI Listing
May 2020