A Study in Adult Subjects Undergoing Posterior Lumbar Spine Surgeries


About this study

The primary purpose of this study is to compare postsurgical opioid consumption through 72 hours postsurgery in patients receiving local infiltration analgesia (LIA) with EXPAREL and bupivacaine HCl (EXPAREL group) with that of patients receiving standard of care (SOC) (control group) in adult subjects undergoing posterior lumbar spine surgeries where both groups are receiving a multimodal pain regimen.

Participation eligibility

Participant eligibility includes age, gender, type and stage of disease, and previous treatments or health concerns. Guidelines differ from study to study, and identify who can or cannot participate. There is no guarantee that every individual who qualifies and wants to participate in a trial will be enrolled. Contact the study team to discuss study eligibility and potential participation.

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 18-75 years old at the time of screening. 
  • Primary surgical indication is related to spinal degenerative disease, including any of the following:
    • Spinal stenosis;
    • Spondylolisthesis;
    • Radiculopathy/instability disc disorders;
    • Degenerative disc disease.
  •  Medically cleared for elective spine surgery.
  • Scheduled to undergo:
    • Elective (i.e., not emergency);
    • Lumbosacral (i.e., L1-S1);
    • Posterior approach with posterior instrumentation.
  • Cohort 1 - Open cohort only: (Open or mini-open surgical technique with): 
    • 1-level (i.e., spanning 2 vertebrae) or 2-level (i.e., spanning 3 contiguous vertebrae);
    • Primary fusion or revision fusion;
    • Open or mini-open surgical technique.
  • Cohort 2 - Tubular or percutaneous cohort only: 
    • 1-level (i.e., spanning 2 vertebrae) or 2-level (i.e., spanning 3 contiguous vertebrae);
    • Primary fusion or revision fusion. Tubular or percutaneous surgical technique.
  • Cohort 3 - Lumbar decompression without fusion outpatient cohort only: 
    • Radiculopathy;
    • Spinal stenosis.
  • Able to provide informed consent and adhere to all study assessments and visit schedule.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Serious spinal pathology determined by Investigator that might meaningfully affect postsurgical outcomes, including any of the following:
    • Suspected cauda equina syndrome (e.g., bowel/bladder involvement);
    • Infection.;
    • Tumor;
    • Fracture;
    • Systemic inflammatory spondyloarthropathy.
  • Contraindication to local anesthesia according to the clinical judgment of the Investigator and based on the EXPAREL label. 
  • Patients who most likely will require PCA pumps in EXPAREL group. 
  • Anterior surgical approaches, including any of the following:
    • Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF);
    • Oblique lumbar interbody fusion (OLIF);
    • Anterior-posterior or 360º fusion.
  • Lateral surgical approaches, including any of the following:
    • Extreme lateral interbody fusion (XLIF);
    • Direct lateral interbody fusion (DLIF);
  • High-dose presurgical opioid use: 
    • Mean daily intake greater than 100 mg mEq PO in the past 30 days.
  • Known allergy, hypersensitivity, or contraindication to any of the following study medications:
    • Bupivacaine;
    • EXPAREL;
    • Tylenol (acetaminophen);
    • Robaxin;
    • 2 or more NSAIDs; 
    • 2 or more gabapentinoids;
    • 2 or more rescue opioids (e.g., oxycodone, morphine, hydromorphone); 
    • 2 or more medications for postoperative nausea, vomiting, or pruritus (e.g., dexamethasone, ondansetron).
  • History of severely impaired renal or hepatic function. 
  • Severe chronic pain that requires analgesic treatment, and in the opinion of the principal Investigator, is likely to meaningfully impact postsurgical outcomes.
  • Subjects that have implanted spinal cord stimulator or intrathecal drug pump. 
  • Any neurologic or psychiatric disorder that might impact postsurgical pain or interfere with study assessments per Investigator discretion. 
  • Malignancy in the last 2 years. 
  • History of misuse, abuse, or dependence on opioid analgesics, other prescription drugs, illicit drugs, or alcohol as defined in DSM-5. Dependence or chronic opioid use will be defined as use of more than 30 morphine equivalents per day during the prior 90 days. 
  • Currently pregnant, nursing, or planning to become pregnant during the study or within 1 month after study drug administration. 
  • Body Mass Index < 17 kg/m2 or > 44 kg/m^2 at screening
  • Subjects receiving Worker's Compensation for disability or who are involved in other litigation related to the spine. 
  • Planned concurrent surgical procedure. 
  • Previous participation in an EXPAREL study. 
  • Administration of any investigational drug within 30 days or 5 elimination half-lives of such investigational drug, whichever is longer, prior to study drug administration, or planned administration of another investigational product or procedure during the subject's participation in this study.

Participating Mayo Clinic locations

Study statuses change often. Please contact the study team for the most up-to-date information regarding possible participation.

Mayo Clinic Location Status

Rochester, Minn.

Mayo Clinic principal investigator

Mohamad Bydon, M.D.

Closed for enrollment

More information


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