Erector Spinae Plane Block With Liposomal Bupivacaine: Analgesic Adjunct in Adult Pectus Surgery

Shawn H. Malan, Dawn E. Jaroszewski, Ryan C. Craner, Ricardo A. Weis, Andrew W. Murray, James R. Meinhardt, Marlene E. Girardo, Ahmad S. Abdelrazek, Bijan J. Borah, Ruchita Dholakia, Bradford B. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Pain management may be challenging in patients undergoing pectus excavatum (PE) bar removal surgery. To enhance recovery, opioid sparing strategies with regional anesthesia including ultrasound-guided erector spinae plane block (ESPB) have been implemented. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of bilateral ESPB with a liposomal bupivacaine/traditional bupivacaine mixture as part of an enhanced patient recovery pathway. Materials and methods: A retrospective review of adult patients who underwent PE bar removal from January 2019 to December 2020 was performed. Perioperative data were reviewed and recorded. Patients who received ESPB were compared to historical controls (non-ESPB patients). Results: A total of 202 patients were included (non-ESPB: 124 patients; ESPB: 78 patients). No adverse events were attributed to ESPB. Non-ESPB patients received more intraoperative opioids (milligram morphine equivalents; 41.8 ± 17.0 mg versus 36.7 ± 17.1, P = 0.05) and were more likely to present to the emergency department within 7 d postoperatively (4.8% versus 0%, P = 0.05) when compared to ESPB patients. No significant difference in total perioperative milligram morphine equivalents, severe pain in postanesthesia care unit (PACU), time from PACU arrival to analgesic administration, PACU length of stay, or postprocedure admission rates between groups were observed. Conclusions: In patients undergoing PE bar removal surgery, bilateral ESPB with liposomal bupivacaine was performed without complications. ESPB with liposomal bupivacaine may be considered as an analgesic adjunct to enhance recovery in patients undergoing cardiothoracic procedures but further prospective randomized clinical trials comparing liposomal bupivacaine to traditional local anesthetics with and without indwelling nerve catheters are necessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-181
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
StatePublished - Sep 2023


  • Erector spinae plane block
  • Liposomal bupivacaine
  • Opioid sparing
  • Pectus excavatum
  • Regional anesthesia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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