• Diagnosis and Initial Management of Musculoskeletal Coccidioidomycosis in Children

      Ho, Aaron K.; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shrader, M. Wade (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Coccidioidomycosis is an invasive fungal infection caused by the inhalation of aerosolized spores of Coccidioides spp., which reside in the arid soil of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. Dissemination of coccidioidomycosis is rare, and can lead to extrapulmonic diseases including meningitis, osteomyelitis, and skin and soft-tissue involvement. The purpose of this study is to report our experience with musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis in children. We retrospectively reviewed the charts of patients with musculoskeletal infection with Coccidioides spp. at our institution from 1997 to 2010. Demographic and clinical data were collected from medical records, including the age of the patient, gender, white blood cell count, immunocompetence, length of stay, location of involvement, and initial treatment. In total, we identified 20 children with musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis. The mean age was 12.3 years (range: 2 to 17) at time of diagnosis. Diagnostic criteria included positive imaging tests (usually MRI), serological positive titers, and/or biopsy with positive cultures. The most common presenting symptom was bone pain (100%) and just 3 (15%) patients had accompanying signs/symptoms of pulmonary infection. Only 2 (5%) patients had a white blood cell count > 15×109/L (5%). Locations of infection included the foot (24%), knee (14%), spine (19%), forearm (10%), lower leg (7%) and other sites (26%). Fluconazole was the most common antifungal agent used (75%). Surgical intervention was required in 12 (60%) of patients. This is the first series that has described musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis exclusively in children. This study suggests that the initial presentation of this disease can be nonspecific and difficult to recognize in children. Clinicians should consider this diagnosis when faced with a musculoskeletal infection in children from the southwestern United States and northern Mexico.
    • Modern Techniques of Adjunctive Pain Control Lower Opioid Use, Pain Scores, and Length-of-Stay in Patients Undergoing Posterior Spinal Fusion for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis

      Nabar, Sean J.; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shrader, M. Wade (The University of Arizona., 2013-04-17)
      Study Design. Retrospective analysis. Objective. To determine if the use of adjunctive pain medications (subcutaneous bupivacaine, dexmedetomidine infusion, and intravenous ketorolac) will reduce the need for opioids, reduce postoperative pain, and shorten length of hospital stay in patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis undergoing posterior spinal fusion. Methods. Retrospective review of children 10 to 18 years with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis receiving posterior spinal fusion surgery over the past 10 years at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Physicians managed the patients’ pain postoperatively with adjunctive medications in addition to intravenous and oral opioids. Variables of interest were local anesthetic bupivacaine delivered subcutaneously via elastomeric pain pump, sedative/analgesic dexmedetomidine infused for up to 24 hours postoperatively, and the NSAID ketorolac delivered intravenously. These three medications were used either alone or in some combination determined by the physician’s clinical judgment. Primary outcomes analyzed were normalized opioid requirement after surgery, VAS pain scores, and length of stay in the hospital. Results. One hundred and ninety-six children were analyzed with no significant differences in demographics. Univariate analysis showed that all three adjunct medications improved outcomes. A multivariate regression model of the outcomes with respect to the three medication variables of interest was developed to analyze the effects of the three medications simultaneously. The regression analysis showed that subcutaneous bupivacaine significantly reduced normalized opioid requirement by 0.98 mg/kg (P = 0.001) and reduced VAS pain scores by 0.67 points (P = 0.004). Dexmedetomidine significantly reduced the average VAS pain scores in the first 24 hours by 0.62 points (P = 0.005). Ketorolac had no effect in the multiple regression analysis. Conclusion. The use of subcutaneous bupivacaine provides good analgesia with low pain scores. A reduction in opioid requirement is beneficial and may be directly related to presence of the bupivacaine pump, although this may be limited by potential treatment bias. The three adjunct medications improve our outcomes favorably and should be studied prospectively.