Who Performs Lumbar Puncture, How Many Do They Perform, How and Why? A Retrospective Study of 6,594 Cases

Xavier Moisset, Aurélie Ruet, Bruno Brochet, Vincent Planche, Patricia Jaffeux, Véronique Gilleron, Nathalie Ong, Pierre Clavelou
Eur Neurol. 2016-01-01; 76(1-2): 8-11
DOI: 10.1159/000447452

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1. Eur Neurol. 2016;76(1-2):8-11. doi: 10.1159/000447452. Epub 2016 Jun 24.

Who Performs Lumbar Puncture, How Many Do They Perform, How and Why? A
Retrospective Study of 6,594 Cases.

Moisset X(1), Ruet A, Brochet B, Planche V, Jaffeux P, Gilleron V, Ong N,
Clavelou P.

Author information:
(1)Clermont Universitx00E9;, Universitx00E9; d’Auvergne, Neuro-Dol, Inserm U1107,
Clermont-Ferrand, France.

Comment in
Eur Neurol. 2016;76(3-4):123-124.

BACKGROUND: The number and indications of lumbar punctures (LPs) performed
nowadays are unknown. The primary aim of this work was to report the number of
LPs performed in each of the departments of 2 French university hospitals, their
indications and the prevalence of atraumatic spinal needles used.
METHODS: We carried out a retrospective study of all the LPs performed in 2014.
The clinical department in which the intervention was performed and the final
diagnosis was made from the Medical Information Department. The type of needles
(cutting or atraumatic) used during the study period was also available.
RESULTS: In 2014, 6,594 LPs were performed. Overall, 80% were performed for
diagnostic purposes. Twenty percent of these LPs were performed in the Neurology
Department and were usually carried out at routine check-ups. Overall, atraumatic
needles were used in 8.0% of cases. Overall, 1.4 LPs per 100 hospital stays were
performed and 0.8 LP for 100 Emergency department admissions.
CONCLUSION: LP is a routine procedure for many clinicians and although
neurologists perform the largest number of LPs, they are doing only one fifth of
all procedures. Atraumatic needles are underused.

© 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

DOI: 10.1159/000447452
PMID: 27336667 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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