Postoperative pain relief is one of the cornerstones of success of orthopaedic surgery. Development of new minimally-invasive surgical procedures, as well as improvements in pharmacological and local and regional techniques should result in optimal postoperative pain control for all patients. The analgesic strategy has to be efficient, with minimal side effects, and be easy to manage at home. Multimodal analgesia allows for a reduction of opiate use and thereby its side effects. Local and regional analgesia is a major component of this multimodal strategy, associated with optimal pain relief, even upon mobilization, and it has beneficial effects on postoperative recovery. Ultrasound guidance improves the success rate of distal nerve blocks and makes distal selective blockade possible, helping to preserve the limb's motility. Besides peripheral nerve blocks, local infiltration (incisional and/or intra-articular) is also important to consider. Duration of the nerve blockade is limited after a single injection. This must be taken into consideration to avoid the recurrence of pain when the patient returns home. Continuous perineural blocks using catheters are an option that can be easily managed at home with monitoring by home-care nurses. Extended-release liposomal bupivacaine and adjuvants such as dexamethasone could significantly enhance the duration of the sensory block, thereby reducing the indications for pain pumps. Non-pharmacological approaches, such as cryotherapy, hypnosis and acupuncture should not be ignored.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Orthopaedic surgery, Ambulatory, Postoperative pain, Multimodal analgesia, Regional analgesia, Peripheral nerve block, Local infiltration