Review ArticleAtraumatic Lumbar Puncture Needles After All These Years, Are We Still Missing the Point?Arendt, Katherine MD*; Demaerschalk, Bart M. MD, MSc, FRCP(C)†; Wingerchuk, Dean M. MD, MSc, FRCP(C)‡; Camann, William MD§ Author Information From the *Instructor in Anesthesia, Mayo Foundation Scholar, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; †Department of Neurology, Cerebrovascular Diseases Center, Mayo Clinic Hospital, Phoenix; ‡Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, AZ, and §Director of Obstetric Anesthesia, Department of Anesthesiology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. Reprints: William Camann, MD, Obstetric Anesthesia, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. E-mail: [email protected]. The Neurologist 15(1):p 17-20, January 2009. | DOI: 10.1097/NRL.0b013e318184f476 Buy Metrics Abstract Background: Cutting needles remain the most commonly used needle design for lumbar puncture in the neurology community, although atraumatic (noncutting) needles have become common and popular for anesthesiologists performing spinal anesthesia. Review Summary: The use of atraumatic spinal needles for lumbar puncture has been shown to significantly reduce the incidence of postdural puncture headache compared with cutting needles, without loss of efficacy or ease of use. Conclusion: The use of noncutting or pencil-point spinal needles should become the standard for performing diagnostic lumbar puncture. © 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.