Background: We sought to define trends in the use of epidural analgesia (EA) for hepatopancreatic procedures, as well as to characterize inpatient outcomes relative to the use of EA.
Methods: The Nationwide Inpatient Sample database was queried to identify all elective hepatopancreatic surgeries between 2000 and 2012. In-hospital outcomes were compared among patients receiving EA vs conventional analgesia using propensity matching.
Results: EA utilization was 7.4% (n = 3,961). The use of EA among minimally invasive procedures increased from 3.8% in 2000 to 9.1% in 2012. The odds of sepsis (odds ratio [OR] .72, 95% confidence interval [CI] .56 to .93), respiratory failure (OR .79, 95% CI .69 to .91), and postoperative pneumonia (OR .77, 95% CI .61 to .98), as well as overall in-hospital mortality (OR .72, 95% CI .56 to .93) were lower in the EA cohort (all P < .05). In contrast, no association was noted between EA and postoperative hemorrhage (OR .81, 95% CI .65 to 1.01, P = .06).
Conclusions: EA use among patients undergoing hepatopancreatic procedures remains low. After controlling for confounding factors, EA remained associated with a reduction in specific pulmonary-related complications, as well as in-hospital mortality.
Keywords: Epidural analgesia; Liver resection; Outcome; Pancreatic resection.
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