Short acting narcotics are not normally required in orthopaedics
Local Infiltration Analgesia was introduced in Ballarat by David Mitchell in 2004. We haven’t looked back.
The most effective method of ensuring patient are comfortable after knee replacements, ACL reconstructions, and shoulder surgery involve injecting a combination of local anaesthetics, anti-inflammatory drugs, and some adrenaline around the operative site. Multimodal analgesics (Panadol, Mobic, and Tramal) means they don’t need a drip, and are able to get up and walk around. It’s a trick to get the intra-operative injection technique perfected, and perfecting patient expectations to be reasonably comfortable, rather than aiming for “zero pain”.
If patients can tolerate this for a knee replacement – surely they can do the same for other orthopaedic pains – eg back pain? Why on earth would short acting narcotics be administered????? Drugs are NOT the key management of ordinary back pain. Posture management, physiotherapy, exercise, weight reduction are all infinitely more important.
In the Ballarat community – we have had a win relative to the rest of the country. Ballarat is the only regional centre in Victoria with a reduction in narcotic death in the last decade. The graph provided by the Courier, all other regional centres have had an increase in narcotic deaths. Published on the ABC website – all over Australia prescription narcotic related deaths are on the increase. In Ballarat, they are on the way down.
Pick yourself doctors that have alternatives to narcotics!