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J Anaesthesiol Clin Pharmacol. 2019 Jan-Mar;35(1):49-52. doi: 10.4103/joacp.JOACP_158_18.

Effect of intrathecal catheterisation on incidence of postdural puncture headache after accidental dural puncture in non-obstetric patients.

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Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care, Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi, India.


Background and Aims:

After accidental dural puncture (ADP) with large bore epidural needles, postdural puncture headache (PDPH) develops in 16%-86% of patients, which is unpleasant and interferes with activities of daily life of the patient. Hence we aimed to assess the effect of intrathecal catheter insertion after ADP with 18G Tuohy needle on incidence of PDPH.

Material and Methods:

In all, 173 patients after ADP were enrolled and divided into two groups according to the choice of treating anesthesiologist. Group IC included 74 patients who had intrathecal catheter placed in subarachnoid space. In group NIC, which included 99 patients, one of the following was done: epidural catheter was cited in a different intervertebral space, or the procedure was abandoned and general anesthesia was administered or single-shot spinal anesthesia was administered through the Tuohy needle itself. The catheters were left in situ for 36-48 h. Patients were monitored for the next 7 days after ADP for the incidence of PDPH, its severity and requirement of analgesics, and duration of catheter in situ from the time of ADP.


The incidence of PDPH in group IC was 36% in comparison to 59% in group NIC (P = 0.001). The severity of PDPH and requirement of analgesics was significantly less in group IC.


Insertion of intrathecal catheter at the site of ADP significantly reduces the incidence and severity of PDPH.


Accidental dural puncture; anesthesia; intrathecal catheterization; postdural puncture headache; wet tap

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