Popliteal block with transfibular approach in ankle arthrodesis: a case series
1 Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, The James Cook University Hospital, Marton Road, Middlesbrough, TS4 3BW, UK
2 Department of Statistics, University of Teesside, Middlesbrough, UK
Journal of Medical Case Reports 2010, 4:135 doi:10.1186/1752-1947-4-135Published: 12 May 2010
Ankle arthrodesis is primarily undertaken to control severe pain in the ankle joint. Immediate postoperative pain is usually treated using oral analgesics, intravenous opiates and regional anaesthesia. The outcomes of ankle fusion, including patient satisfaction studies, are well documented in the literature. However, the advantage of popliteal block in the management of early postoperative pain after ankle fusion for osteoarthritis has not been widely reported. This study aims to determine the role of popliteal block using ankle fusion in the management of ankle osteoarthritis.
Ankle arthrodeses were performed in 27 patients over a five-year period. Eighteen patients were males (one had bilateral arthrodesis) and eight were females. Their mean age was 56 years and they were all Caucasians. The notes and radiographs of the patients were reviewed in retrospect for the duration of their hospital admission, time to union and complications.
Popliteal block is a safe and effective technique for postoperative analgesia in ankle arthrodesis. By using this technique, we achieved a significant reduction in the duration of hospital stay for our patients after ankle arthrodesis. The resultant cost saving was GBP717 for each patient.