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In searching for the 'ideal' muscle relaxant for use with intravenous regional anaesthesia, muscle relaxation was assessed with and without the addition of Atracurium to Bier's Block in four volunteers. This was followed by a clinical study of 36 patients with wrist fractures to confirm the drug's safety and examine the possible clinical advantages of using a muscle relaxant. The addition of 2 mg of Atracurium to the Bier's Block improved the ease of reduction (P less than 0.025) and the quality of analgesia (P less than 0.05) (Mann-Whitney U test). The authors conclude that the addition of Atracurium to a Bier's Block is useful in selected patients with a wrist fracture.