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Doctors Offer Non-Opioid Pain Management Options To Decrease Opioid Use After Surgery

Non-Opioid Pain Management (conye pr)

Despite national efforts to end the opioid crisis, research shows that patients continue to receive large amounts of opioids to treat pain after surgery. In fact, patients received nearly 100 to 200 opioid pills to help manage pain from common orthopedic procedures such as knee and hip replacements. While opioids are considered the standard of care for managing pain following these procedures, they are often associated with several side effects including nausea, constipation, dizziness, and even addiction and dependence. This has driven the team at INOV8 Surgical — one of the top Ambulatory Surgery Centers (ASC) in Houston — to incorporate a non-opioid approach that decreases opioid use after total joint procedures.

Dr. Stefan Kreuzer, founder and orthopedic surgeon at INOV8 Surgical says that an important component to the success of their center is their strategic, team-based mentality. For example, all nurses, anesthesiologists, surgeons, and recovery teams are trained on their multimodal pain management protocol, which includes various non-opioid options, such as EXPAREL® (bupivacaine liposome injectable suspension). EXPAREL is a long-acting local anesthetic that is injected into the surgical site during the procedure to provide pain relief for the first few days after surgery — when pain is often at its worse. Because of its effectiveness, the team now uses EXPAREL in all total joint procedures, which has reduced the average length of stay and sends patients home the same day. In fact, since using an EXPAREL-based multimodal approach — the team has performed approximately 800 same-day discharge knee and hip replacements — a feat which used to be unheard of for patients undergoing joint replacement surgery.

Dr. Chauncey Jones, an anesthesiologist who practices at INOV8 Surgical says the use of EXPAREL has been instrumental in their efforts to ensure a high level of patient care is made available throughout the surgical process. For example, since implementing this pain management approach, the team has seen that satisfied patients with well-managed pain are more likely to get home quicker and experience a positive overall recovery.

As healthcare providers, both Dr. Kreuzer and Dr. Jones agree that bringing innovative methods to patients that may help advance and improve pain management solutions are a top priority to reduce patient exposure to the negative side effects associated with opioids. The team at INVO8 Surgical has successfully minimized opioid prescribing by staying up to speed on the latest treatment options and ensuring all clinicians are educated on their non-opioid-based approach.

For more information, please visit www.EXPAREL.com/safety.

This article is sponsored by Pacira BioSciences, Inc.


EXPAREL® (bupivacaine liposome injectable suspension) is indicated for single-dose infiltration in patients aged 6 years and older to produce postsurgical local analgesia and in adults as an interscalene brachial plexus nerve block to produce postsurgical regional analgesia. Safety and efficacy have not been established in other nerve blocks.

Important Safety Information

EXPAREL should not be used in obstetrical paracervical block anesthesia.

In studies in adults where EXPAREL was injected into a wound, the most common side effects were nausea, constipation, and vomiting.

In studies in adults where EXPAREL was injected near a nerve, the most common side effects were nausea, fever, and constipation.

In the study where EXPAREL was given to children, the most common side effects were nausea, vomiting, constipation, low blood pressure, low number of red blood cells, muscle twitching, blurred vision, itching, and rapid heartbeat.

EXPAREL can cause a temporary loss of feeling and/or loss of muscle movement. How much and how long the loss of feeling and/or muscle movement depends on where and how much of EXPAREL was injected and may last for up to 5 days.

EXPAREL is not recommended to be used in patients younger than 6 years old for injection into the wound, for patients younger than 18 years old for injection near a nerve, and/or in pregnant women.

Tell your health care provider if you or your child has liver disease, since this may affect how the active ingredient (bupivacaine) in EXPAREL is eliminated from the body.

EXPAREL should not be injected into the spine, joints, or veins.

The active ingredient in EXPAREL can affect the nervous system and the cardiovascular system; may cause an allergic reaction; may cause damage if injected into the joints; and can cause a rare blood disorder.


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