Background: Laminoplasty and laminectomy have been used for decades for the treatment of intraspinal space-occupying lesions, spinal stenosis, disc herniation, injuries, etc. After these procedures, patients often experience severe postoperative pain at the surgical site. Intense immediate postoperative pain after many spinal procedures makes its control of utmost importance. Preemptive injection of local anesthetics can significantly reduce postoperative pain during rest and movement; however, the analgesic effect is only maintained for a relatively short period of time. Whether betamethasone combined with local anesthetic for laminoplasty or laminectomy has better short-term and long-term effects than the local anesthetic alone has not been reported yet.
Methods: The PRE-EASE trial is a prospective, randomized, open-label, blinded endpoint, single-center clinical study including 116 participants scheduled for elective laminoplasty or laminectomy, with a 6 months' follow-up process. Preemptive local infiltration with betamethasone and ropivacaine (treatment group) or ropivacaine alone (control group) throughout the entire thickness of the planned incision site will be performed by the surgeon prior to making the incision. The primary outcome will be the cumulative butorphanol consumption within the first 48-h postoperative period.
Discussion: This study will add significant new knowledge to the effect and feasibility of preemptive local infiltration of betamethasone for postoperative pain management in laminoplasty and laminectomy.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT04153396. Registered on 6 November 2019.
Keywords: Betamethasone; Diprospan; Laminectomy; Laminoplasty; Postoperative pain; Preemptive infiltration; Protocol; Randomized controlled trial.