Researchers set out to explore what insights for patient safety and physician professional liability are revealed through analysis of malpractice claims involving outpatient chronic pain procedures

Findings from an analysis of CRICO Strategies Comparative Benchmarking System (CBS)—a database of more than 400,000 malpractice claims estimated to contain 30% of all malpractice claims in the United States—demonstrated that epidural steroid injections are among the most commonly performed interventional pain procedures and, while a familiar procedure to pain management practitioners, may result in significant neurological injury.

Researchers recommend that “efforts to minimize practitioner liability and patient harm, like the claims themselves, will be multifactorial. Best outcomes will likely come from continued robust training in procedural skills, attention paid to published best practice recommendations, documentation that includes an inclusive consent discussion, and thoughtful patient selection.”

The study published in the peer-review journal, Anesthesia & Analgesia (subscription may be required).