Clin Orthop Surg.  2019 Jun;11(2):183-186. 10.4055/cios.2019.11.2.183.

Influence of Epidural Steroid Injection on Adrenal Function

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Orthopedics, Seoul Sacred Heart General Hospital, Seoul, Korea. adk0208@hanmail.net

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Spinal diseases are self-limited or non-progressive in many cases. Epidural steroid injection (ESI) is a common nonsurgical treatment option for spinal pain. Despite concerns about complications of repeated steroid injection, few studies reported on the adrenal function of spine disease patients undergoing surgery after ESI. We investigated the influence of preoperative multiple ESIs on adrenal function in spine surgery patients.
METHODS
This was a retrospective study with prospective data collection. Those who underwent elective spinal operations and had a history of multiple ESIs from January to June 2017 were selected as a study group. Those who underwent knee arthroplasty and did not have a history of ESI and any kind of steroid injection in other areas during 6 months before surgery were selected as a control group. Demographic data were compared to assess homogeneity between groups. We assessed the preoperative serum cortisol level (SCL) to compare the basal adrenal function between groups. Also, we assessed the elevation of SCL postoperatively to evaluate the adrenal response to the surgical stress in each group. For subgroup analysis, we divided all patients into normal (7-28 µg/dL) and subnormal groups according to SCL and analyzed risk factors of adrenal suppression with multivariate logistic regression test.
RESULTS
There were 53 patients in the study group and 130 in the control group. Age and sex were homogeneous between groups. There was significant intergroup difference in preoperative SCL (10.4 ± 4.8 µg/dL in the study group vs. 12.0 ± 4.2 µg/dL in the control group; p = 0.026).The postoperative day one SCL was 11.6 ± 5.0 µg/dL in the study group without significant increase from the preoperative level (p = 0.117), whereas the increase was significant in the control group with a postoperative level of 14.4 ± 4.4 µg/dL (p < 0.001). Among all patients, the SCL was subnormal in 18 patients and within the normal range in 165. Spine surgery was the independent risk factor irrespective of age and sex (odds ratio, 3.472; p = 0.015).
CONCLUSIONS
Our results suggest that concern should be raised about the influence of preoperative multiple ESIs on adrenal suppression in spine surgery patients.

Keyword

Serum cortisol level; Epidural steroid injection; Adrenal function

Cited by  1 articles

The Evidence for Nonoperative Treatment of Lumbar Spinal Diseases
Hak Sun Kim, Dong Ki Ahn, Hyung Yun Seo, Chang Soo Kim, Myung Jin Kim
J Korean Soc Spine Surg. 2019;26(4):178-190.    doi: 10.4184/jkss.2019.26.4.178.


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