Peripheral nerve block in patients with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobility type: A case series

Andrew Neice, Eryn E. Stubblefield, Glenn E. Woodworth, Michael F. Aziz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Study Objective: Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) is an inherited disease characterized by defects in various collagens or their post translational modification, with an incidence estimated at 1 in 5000. Performance of peripheral nerve block in patients with EDS is controversial, due to easy bruising and hematoma formation after injections as well as reports of reduced block efficacy. The objective of this study was to review the charts of EDS patients who had received peripheral nerve block for any evidence of complications or reduced efficacy. Design: Case series, chart review. Setting: Academic medical center. Patients: Patients with a confirmed or probable diagnosis of EDS who had received a peripheral nerve block in the last 3 years were identified by searching our institutions electronic medical record system. Interventions: The patients were classified by their subtype of EDS. Patients with no diagnosed subtype were given a probable subtype based on a chart review of the patient's symptoms. Measurements: Patient charts were reviewed for any evidence of complications or reduced block efficacy. Main Results: A total of 21 regional anesthetics, on 16 unique patients were identified, 10 of which had a EDS subtype diagnosis. The majority of these patients had a diagnosis of hypermobility-type EDS. No block complications were noted in any patients. Two block failures requiring repeat block were noted, and four patients reported uncontrolled pain on postoperative day one despite successful placement of a peripheral nerve catheter. Additionally, blocks were performed without incident in patients with classical-type and vascular-type EDS although the number was so small that no conclusions can be drawn about relative safety of regional anesthesia in these groups. Conclusions: This series fails to show an increased risk of complications of peripheral nerve blockade in patients with hypermobility-type EDS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-30
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Anesthesia
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Benign joint hypermobility syndrome
  • Case series
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
  • Hypermobility type
  • Peripheral nerve block
  • Regional anesthesia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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