Congratulations, Ruth Landau, MD

November 16, 2017

Ruth Landau, MD, Associate Director of Obstetric Anesthesia and Director of the Center of Precision Medicine in Anesthesiology, presented her research on length of surgical incisions and its effect on pain after cesarean delivery during the 2017 American Society of Anesthesiologist (ASA) in October. Dr. Landau’s presentation titled “Influence of Surgical Incision Length in Acute & Chronic Post-Cesarean Pain” was selected as one of the top 10 papers of the conference in clinical science.

                “To our knowledge, this ‘Goldilocks effect’ of surgical incision length on pain outcomes has not be previously reported and merits further investigation to unravel the effects of short-term stretch and increased tissue trauma on acute and chronic post-cesarean pain,” Dr. Landau explained. “We were surprised to find tremendous variability in surgical incision length for this procedure. While the median length was 15 centimeters, the range was from 9 to 23 centimeters, which may in part be due to the surgeons’ practice and patients’ body characteristics.

According to Dr. Landau’s findings, short incisions (less than 12cm) were associated with significantly increased pain furring the first 48 hours after delivery, while long incisions (more than 17cm) were associated with increased pain after delivery and up to 12 months. Although the proportion of women with chronic pain was extremely low, women with longer incisions may be those that require tailored analgesic strategies to improve their recovery.

                Dr. Landau hopes that her research will continue to raise interest and bring awareness on the multiple factors that influence the recovery women experience after cesarean delivery.

For more information concerning Dr. Landau’s research please contact Ruth Landau, MD at rl262@cumc.columbia.edu