Paravertebral blocks and enhanced recovery after surgery protocols in breast reconstructive surgery: Patient selection and perspectives

Rajiv P. Parikh, Terence M. Myckatyn

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The management of postoperative pain is of critical importance for women undergoing breast reconstruction after surgical treatment for breast cancer. Mitigating postoperative pain can improve health-related quality of life, reduce health care resource utilization and costs, and minimize perioperative opiate use. Multimodal analgesia pain management strategies with nonopioid analgesics have improved the value of surgical care in patients undergoing various operations but have only recently been reported in reconstructive breast surgery. Regional anesthesia techniques, with paravertebral blocks (PVBs) and transversus abdominis plane (TAP) blocks, and enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) pathways have been increasingly utilized in opioid-sparing multimodal analgesia protocols for women undergoing breast reconstruction. The objectives of this review are to 1) comprehensively review regional anesthesia techniques in breast reconstruction, 2) outline important components of ERAS protocols in breast reconstruction, and 3) provide evidence-based recommendations regarding each intervention included in these protocols. The authors searched across six databases to identify relevant articles. For each perioperative intervention included in the ERAS protocols, the literature was exhaustively reviewed and evidence-based recommendations were generated using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation system methodology. This study provides a comprehensive evidence-based review of interventions to optimize perioperative care and postoperative pain control in breast reconstruction. Incorporating evidence-based interventions into future ERAS protocols is essential to ensure high value care in breast reconstruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1567-1581
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Pain Research
StatePublished - 2018


  • Autologous flap
  • Breast implan
  • ERAS
  • Enhanced recovery after surgery
  • Postmastectomy breast reconstruction


Dive into the research topics of 'Paravertebral blocks and enhanced recovery after surgery protocols in breast reconstructive surgery: Patient selection and perspectives'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this