There is (probably) no (meaningful) difference in (most) outcomes between 'spinal' and 'general' anaesthesia for hip fracture surgery: time to move forward

Br J Anaesth. 2023 Apr;130(4):385-389. doi: 10.1016/j.bja.2023.01.013. Epub 2023 Feb 16.


A meta-analysis influenced by two recent large randomised controlled trials (REGAIN and RAGA) concluded that little, if any, difference in commonly measured outcomes exists between patients administered spinal or general anaesthesia for their hip fracture surgery. We explore whether there is genuinely no difference, or what the methodological problems in research might be that prevent any real difference from being observed. We also discuss the need for greater nuance in future research to determine how anaesthetists might deliver perioperative care towards improving postoperative recovery trajectories in patients following hip fracture.

Keywords: general anaesthesia; geriatric anaesthesia; hip fracture; postoperative outcomes; spinal anaesthesia.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Editorial
  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia, General
  • Anesthesia, Spinal*
  • Hip Fractures* / surgery
  • Humans
  • Perioperative Care
  • Postoperative Complications / prevention & control