PT031 - Atraumatic diagnostic lumbar puncture
The EBPB were asked to look at the evidence for the use of atraumatic needles in diagnostic lumbar puncture (DLP).
The EBPB noted a clear clinical benefit to using atraumatic needles for DLP, through a reduction of post-dural puncture headache (PDPH). Economic analysis suggests that
despite the increased cost of atraumatic needles, cost savings could be achieved through PDPH reduction. The EBPB agreed that even without the potential for cost savings,
patients would still benefit from this change in needle design.
The EBPB therefore make the following recommendations:
Welsh Health Boards and Trusts should switch to using atraumatic needles (e.g. pencil-point) instead of conventional needles (e.g. Quincke) to carry out DLP.