PainRelief.com Interview with:
Jennifer Grasch, MD
Fellow, Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
PainRelief.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Cesarean delivery is the most commonly performed major surgery in the US. Almost all patients who have a cesarean delivery take opioid pain medications for postoperative pain, but we know that opioids have many short- and long-term side effects.
We conducted a triple-blind sham-controlled randomized clinical trial testing the efficacy of adding transcutaneous treatment with a high-frequency (20,000 Hz) electrical stimulation device to a multimodal analgesic protocol after cesarean delivery.
Participants who were randomly assigned to the functional device used 47% less opioid medication postoperatively in the hospital and were prescribed fewer opioids at discharge than those who received treatment with a sham device.
PainRelief.com: What are the main findings?
Response: These findings suggest that use of the high frequency electrical stimulation device may be a helpful adjunct to decrease opioid use without compromising pain control after cesarean delivery.
PainRelief.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Future studies focused on integrating the device into routine care and in other settings are needed to confirm the feasibility and generalizability of the findings.
PainRelief.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Response: There are 1.2 million cesarean deliveries performed annually in the US. The rate of development of chronic opioid dependence following surgery is 3% to 6%, so approximately 36,000 to 72,000 individuals in the US each year develop dependence after cesarean delivery. Effective opioid-sparing methods of postoperative pain control are sorely needed and should remain a public health priority.
Grasch JL, Costantine MM, Mast DDD, et al. Noninvasive Bioelectronic Treatment of Postcesarean Pain: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Netw Open. 2023;6(10):e2338188. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2023.38188
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Last Updated on October 22, 2023 by PainRelief.com