Efficacy of Epidural Perineural Injection of Autologous Conditioned Serum in Unilateral Cervical Radiculopathy: A Pilot Study

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Study Design.Prospective randomized pilot study.Objective.Evaluation of the efficacy of epidural perineural injection of autologous conditioned serum (ACS) versus methylprednisone (MPS) in unilateral cervical radiculopathy patients.Summary of Background Data.Cervical radiculopathy is often treated by nonoperative and operative means. Guided injections of steroids have been used previously. We used ACS, an orthobiologic derived from patients' own blood in patients of unilateral cervical radiculopathy.Methods.Forty patients were equally allocated into ACS and MPS groups and were injected with 2.5 to 3 mL of ACS or MPS, respectively, under image guidance into the perineural area of the affected nerve root. They were followed up for 6 months with visual analogue scale for pain, neck pain disability scale in Hindi language, neck disability index, and Short Form of Health Survey-12 (SF-12).Results.Patients who had received injections of ACS and MPS both had improvements in the scores of the evaluation tools. The improvement in the ACS patients was gradual and sustained during the entire study period whereas that in the MPS group had some deterioration over time. No major complications were noted among the 2 groups. Minor complications were noted in both the groups.Conclusion.ACS can be considered an equally good or better modality of nonoperative management in patients of unilateral cervical radiculopathy as MPS. The safety profile is good and the improvement seen is sustained over time. Thus, it may be offered to affected patients before offering them surgery.Level of Evidence: 2

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