The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 35, Issue 5, 1228 - 1232

Intraoperative Surgeon Administered Adductor Canal Blockade Is Not Inferior to Anesthesiologist Administered Adductor Canal Blockade: A Prospective Randomized Trial

Greenky, Max R. et al.


Controlling postoperative pain and reducing opioid requirements after total knee arthroplasty remain a challenge, particularly in an era stressing rapid recovery protocols and early discharge. A single-shot adductor canal blockade (ACB) has been shown to be effective in decreasing postoperative pain. The purpose of the present study is to compare the efficacy of an anesthesiologist administered ACB and a surgeon administered intraoperative ACB.


Patients undergoing primary total knee arthroplasty were prospectively randomized to receive either an anesthesiologist administered (group 1) or surgeon administered (group 2) ACB using 15 mL of ropivacaine 0.5%. Primary outcomes were pain visual analog scale, range of motion, and opioid consumption.


Thirty-four patients were randomized to group 1 and 29 to group 2. Opioid equivalents consumed were equal on postoperative day (POD) 0, 1, and 2. Patients in group 1 had statistically less pain on POD 0, but this did not reach clinical significance and there was no difference in pain on POD 1 or 2. Patients in group 1 had significantly increased active flexion POD 1, but there was no difference in active flexion on POD 0 or 6 weeks postop. There was no difference in patient satisfaction with pain control or short-term functional outcomes.


Surgeon administered ACB is not inferior to anesthesiologist administered ACB with respect to pain, opioid consumption, range of motion, patient satisfaction, or short-term functional outcomes. Surgeon administered ACB is an effective alternative to anesthesiologist administered ACB.

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