Intrathecal labor analgesia using new local anesthetics such as ropivacaine or levobupivacaine becomes more popular by virtues of their safety and decreased motor weakness. However, the analgesic efficacy of the clinically effective intrathecal doses of these new local anesthetics combined with fentanyl has yet to be determined.
Sixty parturients who requested neuraxial analgesia in early active labor were randomly assigned to either ropivacaine (group R, n = 30) or levobupivacaine (group L, n = 30) group. Group R received 3 mg of intrathecal ropivacaine and the group L received 3 mg of intrathecal levobupivacaine mixed with 20 µg of fentanyl as part of a combined spinal-epidural (CSE) technique. The associated block parameters, such as pain scores, duration of analgesia, the highest levels of the sensory block and motor block scores 30 mins after the injection were compared between two groups.
Intrathecal ropivacaine offered shorter analgesia (87 ± 41 min vs. 122 ± 56 min, P < 0.05) with lower sensory height (T8.5 vs. T6, P < 0.05) and led to lower incidence of complete analgesia (73 vs. 97%, P < 0.05) compared with intrathecal levobupivacaine. Although motor weakness was comparable in both groups, significantly weak perineal squeezing was noticed in Group L (7 of 30 parturients vs. 16 of 30, P < 0.05).
Clinically relevant doses of intrathecal levobupivacaine in combination with fentanyl as part of a CSE technique provides more effective analgesia than equivalent doses of intrathecal ropivacaine in early labor, but is accompanied by slight motor weakness.
Combined spinal-epidural anesthesia; Intrathecal injection; Labor analgesia; Levobupivacaine; Ropivacaine
Needle-through-needle combined spinal–epidural (CSE) may cause significant delay in patient positioning resulting in settling down of spinal anaesthetic and unacceptably low block level. Bilateral hip flexion has been shown to extend the spinal block by flattening lumbar lordosis. However, patients with lower limb fractures cannot flex their injured limb. This study was conducted to find out if unilateral hip flexion could extend the level of spinal anaesthesia following a prolonged CSE technique. Fifty American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) I/II males with unilateral femur fracture were randomly allocated to Control or Flexion groups. Needle-through-needle CSE was performed in the sitting position at L2-3 interspace and 2.6 ml 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine injected intrathecally. Patients were made supine 4 min after the spinal injection or later if epidural placement took longer. The Control group patients (n=25) lay supine with legs straight, whereas the Flexion group patients (n=25) had their uninjured hip and knee flexed for 5 min. Levels of sensory and motor blocks and time to epidural drug requirement were recorded. There was no significant difference in sensory levels at different time-points; maximum sensory and motor blocks; times to achieve maximum blocks; and time to epidural drug requirement in two groups. However, four patients in the Control group in contrast to none in the Flexion group required epidural drug before start of surgery. Moreover, in the Control group four patients took longer than 30 min to achieve maximum sensory block. To conclude, unilateral hip flexion did not extend the spinal anaesthetic level; however, further studies are required to explore the potential benefits of this technique.
Anaesthetic techniques-combined spinal-epidural; anaesthetic techniques-subarachnoid; anaesthetics local - bupivacaine; position-hip flexion
Controversy exists regarding the benefits and risks of combined spinal-epidural compared with epidural analgesia (CSE, EPID) for labor analgesia. We hypothesized that CSE would result in fewer patient requests for top-up doses compared to EPID.
One hundred ASA PS 1 or 2 parous women at term in early labor (<5 cm cervical dilation) requesting analgesia were randomized in double-blind fashion to the EPID group (epidural bupivacaine 2.5 mg/mL, 3 ml, followed by bupivacaine 1.25 mg/mL, 10 ml with fentanyl 50 μg) or the CSE group (intrathecal bupivacaine 2.5 mg with fentanyl 25 μg). Both groups received identical infusions of bupivacaine 0.625 mg/mL with fentanyl 2 μg/ml at 12 ml/hr. The primary outcome variable was the number of top-up doses requested to treat breakthrough pain.
There was no significant difference between the two groups in the percentage of patients requesting top-up doses (44% CSE vs. 51% EPID; 95% confidence interval of the difference -28% to +14%) nor in the need for multiple top-up doses (14% CSE vs. 15% EPID). VAS scores were lower in the CSE group compared to the epidural group at 10 minutes after initiation of analgesia [median (IQR) 0 cm (0, 0) vs. 4 cm (1, 6) respectively, p < 0.001] and at 30 minutes [0 cm (0, 0) vs. 0 cm (0, 1), respectively, p=0.03].
We did not find a difference in the need for top-up doses in parous patients; however, CSE provided better analgesia in the first 30 minutes compared to EPID.
Potentiating the effect of intrathecal local anesthetics by addition of intrathecal opiods for intra-abdominal surgeries is known. In this study by addition of fentanyl we tried to minimize the dose of bupivacaine, thereby reducing the side effects caused by higher doses of intrathecal bupivacaine in cesarean section.
Study was performed on 120 cesarean section parturients divided into six groups, identified as B8, B10 and B 12.5 8.10 and 12.5 mg of bupivacaine mg and FB8, FB10 and FB 12.5 received a combination of 12.5 μg intrathecal fentanyl respectively. The parameters taken into consideration were visceral pain, hemodynamic stability, intraoperative sedation, intraoperative and postoperative shivering, and postoperative pain.
Onset of sensory block to T6 occurred faster with increasing bupivacaine doses in bupivacaine only groups and bupivacaine -fentanyl combination groups. Alone lower concentrations of bupivacaine could not complete removed the visceral pain. Blood pressure declined with the increasing concentration of Bupivacaine and Fentanyl. Incidence of nausea and shivering reduces significantly whereas, the postoperative pain relief and hemodynamics increased by adding fentanyl. Pruritis, maternal respiratory depression and changes in Apgar score of babies do not occur with fentanyl.
Spinal anesthesia among the neuraxial blocks in obstetric patients needs strict dose calculations because minimal dose changes, complications and side effects arise, providing impetus for this study. Here the synergistic, potentiating effect of fentanyl (an opiod) on bupivacaine (a local anesthetic) in spinal anesthesia for cesarian section is presented, fentanyl is able to reduce the dose of bupivacaine and therefore its harmful effects.
The highly lipid-soluble opioids, sufentanil and fentanyl, are used in combination with low-concentration bupivacaine to provide combined spinal epidural (CSE) analgesia during labour. We designed a prospective, randomized, single-blind study to compare the efficacy of these two opioids with bupivacaine in terms of the quality of analgesia, side-effects and maternal and foetal outcome.
Sixty parturients requesting labour analgesia were divided into two groups randomly. Group S (n=30) received bupivacaine heavy (2.5 mg) and sufentanil (5 mcg) intrathecally and 10 mL intermittent bolus of sufentanil 0.30 mcg/mL in bupivacaine 0.125% as epidural top-ups. Group F (n=30) received bupivacaine heavy (2.5 mg) and fentanyl (25 mcg) intrathecally and 10 mL intermittent bolus of fentanyl 2.5 mcg/mL in bupivacaine 0.125% as epidural top-ups. Duration of intrathecal and epidural analgesia, mean duration between epidural top-ups and total analgesic requirements were noted. Pain and overall satisfaction scores were assessed with a 10-point visual scale. Mode of delivery and neonatal Apgar scores were recorded.
Maternal demographic characteristics were comparable between the groups. Although CSE provided satisfactory analgesia in both the groups, parturients of group S had a significant prolongation of analgesia through the intrathecal route compared with parturients of group F. Incidence of caesarean, instrumental delivery did not differ between the groups. No difference in the incidence of motor blockade or cephalad extent of sensory analgesia was observed. Neonatal outcome and incidence of side-effects were similar in both the groups.
We conclude that combined spinal epidural using sufentanil and fentanyl achieved high patient satisfaction and excellent labour analgesia without serious maternal or neonatal side-effects. Sufentanil provided a significantly longer duration of labour analgesia compared with fentanyl.
Combined spinal epidural; fentanyl; labour analgesia; sufentanil
Shivering associated with neuraxial anesthesia is a common problem that is uncomfortable for patients; it is of unknown ethnology and has no definite treatment.
The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of warm intrathecal bupivacaine stored at 23°C and cold intrathecal bupivacaine stored at 4°C on shivering during delivery under spinal anesthesia.
Seventy-eight parturient women scheduled for nonemergency cesarean delivery were enrolled in the study and separated into 2 groups. The standard group received 10 mg of heavy bupivacaine 0.5% stored at room temperature (23°C) plus 10 μg of fentanyl intrathecally (warm group), and the case group received 10 mg of heavy bupivacaine 0.5% stored at 4°C plus 10 μg of fentanyl intrathecally (cold group). Data collection, including sensory block level, blood pressure, core temperature, and shivering intensity, was first performed every minute for 10 min, then every 5 min for 35 min and, finally, every 10 min until the sensory level receded to L4.
There were no differences between the 2 groups in the amount of bleeding, pulse rate, oxygen saturation, neonatal Apgar, and incidence of vomiting. The incidence and intensity of shivering decreased in the warm group (P=0.002).
Warming of solutions can reduce the incidence and intensity of shivering in parturient candidates for cesarean delivery under spinal anesthesia.
Cesarean; cold bupivacaine 0.5%; intrathecal; shivering; warm bupivacaine 0.5%
A decreased lumbosacral subarachnoidal space volume is a major factor in the cephalad intrathecal spread of local anesthetics in term parturients and their subarachnoidal space is decreased due to the compressive effect of huge uteri. Therefore, they show a higher level of sensory block and hypotensive episodes. The purpose of this study is to investigate whether the symphysis-fundal height (SFH) correlates with the highest sensory level and the amount of ephedrine administered under spinal anesthesia.
Fifty-two uncomplicated parturients who consented to spinal anesthesia for elective cesarean section were studied. The SFH of all parturients had been measured just before the spinal anesthesia administered by one person. Hyperbaric bupivacaine with fentanyl 20 µg, was administered for spinal anesthesia. The amount of 0.5% bupivacaine was adjusted according to the patient's height and weight. The level of sensory block and the amounts of ephedrine to treat hypotension, nausea and vomiting were assessed. Linear regression and correlation analysis were applied to analyze the data.
According to the results of correlation analysis, there was no significant correlation between the level of sensory block and SFH. There were statistically significant positive correlations between the amount of ephedrine administered due to hypotension and SFH.
In term parturients choosing elective cesarean section, the SFH is not correlated with the sensory level of spinal anesthesia, but is correlated with the amount of ephedrine administered during spinal anesthesia.
Cesarean section; Hypotension; Nausea; Spinal anesthesia; Vomiting
Tetrology of Fallot (TOF) is the most commonly encountered congenital cardiac lesion in pregnancy. Although there are controversies regarding safe anesthetic technique for parturient with TOF, we use low-dose sequential combined-spinal epidural anesthesia in such a case posted for Cesarean section and found that low dose (0.5 ml of 0.5%) intrathecal bupivacaine and fentanyl with sequential epidural bupivacaine supplementation was adequate for the performance of an uncomplicated Cesarean section with minimal side effects and good fetal outcome. Thus, though the choice of anesthesia can vary in such patients, low-dose sequential combined-spinal epidural can be a safe alternate to achieve good anesthesia with impressive cardiovascular stability.
Cesarean section; combined-spinal epidural anesthesia; tetrology of Fallot
Subarachnoid block is a widely used technique for cesarean section. To improve the quality of analgesia and prolong the duration of analgesia, addition of intrathecal opioids to local anesthetics has been encouraged. We compared the effects of sufentanil 2.5 µg and 5 µg, which were added to intrathecal hyperbaric bupivacaine.
We enrolled 105 full term parturients were randomly divided into 3 groups: Group 1 (control), Group 2 (sufentanil 2.5 µg), and Group 3 (sufentanil 5 µg). In every group, 0.5% heavy bupivacaine was added according to the adjusted dose regimen. We determined the maximum level of sensory block and motor block, the quality of intraoperative analgesia, the duration of effective analgesia and side effects.
There were no significant differences among the 3 groups in the maximum level of the sensory block and motor block. Recovery rate of the sensory block, however, was significantly slower in Group 3 than Group 1. Quality of intraopertive analgesia, muscle relaxation, and duration of effective analgesia were enhanced by increasing the dosage of intrathecal sufentanil. Frequencies of hypotension, maximum sedation level, and pruritus were directly related to the dosage of intrathecal sufentanil, whereas nausea and vomiting occurred only in the groups using sufentanil.
The addition of sufentanil 2.5 µg for spinal anesthesia provides adequate intraoperative analgesia and good postoperative analgesia with minimal adverse effects on the mother.
Bupivacaine; Cesarean section; Spinal anesthesia; Sufentanil
To test the hypothesis that 5 mg/mL tramadol is superior to 3 μg/mL fentanyl when combined with 0.125% ropivacaine in parturients undergoing labor during epidural analgesia.
Sixty-one parturients undergoing labor selected for delivery with epidural analgesia were randomized into two groups: Group tramadol (0.125% ropivacaine plus tramadol 5 mg/mL) and Group fentanyl (0.125% ropivacaine plus fentanyl 3 μg/mL). Hemodynamics, rate of cesarean delivery, sensory block level, Bromage motor scale scores, instrument-assisted delivery, oxytocin use, visual analog scale (VAS) scores, Apgar scores, umbilical cord artery gas analysis, and maternal side-effects including nausea, vomiting, pruritus, urinary retention, shivering, hypotension, and respiratory depression were recorded.
The two groups had no significant differences with respect to maternal hemodynamics, neonatal heart rate, VAS scores, rate of cesarean delivery, sensory block level, Bromage motor scale scores, instrument-assisted delivery, oxytocin use, hypotension, nausea, vomiting, and respiratory depression (p > 0.05). The incidence of pruritus, shivering, and urinary retention were more commonly observed in Group fentanyl despite there was no significant difference between the two groups. Umbilical artery pH was significantly lower while PCO2 was higher in Group fentanyl than Group tramadol (p = 0.003 and p = 0.026, respectively). Birth-weight, umbilical artery PO2 and base deficit, and Apgar scores at 1 and 5 min were comparable between the two groups (p > 0.05).
Our observations suggest that tramadol seems to be a safe alternative to fentanyl for labor analgesia due to its similar analgesic efficacy.
Analgesia; epidural; fentanyl; labor; tramadol
The aim of this prospective, double-blinded study was to investigate the effects of clonidine in co-administration with bupivacaine during spinal anesthesia, regarding the onset and regression of motor and sensory block, postoperative analgesia and possible side effects.
We randomly selected 66 male patients (age 35 to 70), from the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) class I–II; these patients were scheduled for transurethral surgical procedures. These patients were randomly allocated into two groups of 33 patients each: group B (bupivacaine) only received 0.5% isobaric bupivacaine 7.5 mg intrathecally and group BC (bupivacaine + clonidine) received bupivacaine 7.5 mg and clonidine 25 μg intrathecally. We performed the spinal anesthesia at a level of L3–L4 with a 25-gauge needle. We assessed the sensory block with a pin-prick, the motor block using the Bromage scale, analgesia with the visual analog scale and sedation with the modified Wilson scale. We also recorded the hemodynamic and respiratory parameters.
The groups were demographically similar. The mean time of achievement of motor block (Bromage 3) and sensory block at level T9 was significantly shorter in the BC group compared with B group (p = 0.002, p = 0.000, respeectively). The motor block regression time was not significantly different between the two groups (p = 0.237). The postoperative analgesia requirement was significantly longer in group BC compared with group B (p = 0.000). No neurological deficit, sedation or other significant adverse effects were recorded.
The intrathecal application of clonidine in combination with bupivacaine improves the duration and quality of spinal anesthesia; it also provides longer duration of postoperative analgesia, without significant side effects.
Subarachnoid block is widely used for cesarean section due to the rapid induction, the complete analgesia, the low failure rate and the prevention of aspiration pneumonia. The addition of intrathecal opioids to local anesthetics seems to improve the quality of analgesia & prolong the duration of analgesia. Therefore we compared the effects of fentanyl 20 µg and sufentanil 2.5 µg, which were added to intrathecal hyperbaric bupivacaine.
Seventy two healthy term parturients were randomly divided into three groups: Group C (control), Group F (fentanyl 20 µg) and Group S (sufentanil 2.5 µg). In every group, 0.5% heavy bupivacaine was added according to the adjusted dose regimen by Harten et al. We observed the maximal level of the sensory block and motor block, the quality of intraoperative analgesia, the duration of effective analgesia and the side effects.
There were significant differences between the control and the fentanyl 20 µg and sufentanil 2.5 µg groups for the degree of muscle relaxation, the quality of intraoperative analgesia, the maximal sedation level and the duration of effective analgesia. The frequencies of side effects such as nausea and pruritis in the opioid groups were higher than those in the control group. But there were no differences between fentanyl 20 µg and sufentanil 2.5 µg for the frequencies of nausea and pruritis.
The addition of fentanyl 20 µg or sufentanil 2.5 µg for spinal anesthesia provides adequate intraoperative analgesia without significant adverse effects on the mother and neonate.
Bupivacaines; Cesarean section; Fentanyl; Spinal anesthesia; Sufentanil
This study was performed to compare the effect of different doses of intrathecal meperidine on the incidence and intensity of shivering and other side-effects after spinal anesthesia for cesarean delivery.
One hundred and fifty-six parturient women scheduled for elective cesarean delivery were enrolled in four groups. Spinal anesthesia consisted of heavy bupivacaine 0.5% (10 mg) in the standard group (Group I), heavy bupivacaine 0.5% (10 mg) plus meperidine (0.2 mg per kg) in Group II, heavy bupivacaine 0.5% (10 mg) plus meperidine (0.3 mg per kg) in Group III, heavy bupivacaine 0.5% (10 mg) plus meperidine (0.4 mg per kg) in Group IV. The signs and symptoms were recorded by an observer unaware of the study groups. Data were analyzed using analysis of variance, Kruskal–Wallis H-test and chi-square. A P value less than 0.05 was considered to be significant.
The systolic blood pressure, amount of bleeding, Pulse Rate, O2 saturation, neonatal apgar scores, core temperatures and sensory level revealed no difference between groups (P>0.05). The incidence (47.5%, 37.5%, 27.5% and 15.0%, respectively) and intensity of shivering decreased as the dose of meperidine increased (P=0.002) but the incidence of nausea and vomiting (8.0%, 15.4%, 25.9% and 35.8%, respectively) (P=0.000) and pruritis (25.64, 28.21, 38.46, and 48.72 respectively) increased as the dose of meperidine increased (P=0.000).
The high dose of intrathecal meperidine is effective in reducing the incidence and intensity of shivering associated with spinal anesthesia for cesarean delivery but the high incidence of nausea and vomiting is unpleasant for the patient and can be a major problem with a high dose of meperdine.
Bupivacaine 0.5%; delivery; intrathecal; meperidine; shivering
There are a number of adjuvants to be used for local anesthetics in spinal block. The aim of this study was to demonstrate the possible effect of intrathecal midazolam compared with bupivacaine as adjuvants in spinal anesthesia with bupivacaine in chronic opium abuses.
In a double blind, randomized clinical trial, 90 opium abuser patients undergoing lower limb orthopedic surgery were selected and randomly assigned into 3 groups (30 cases each). The patients received 15 mg plain bupivacaine, or 15 mg bupivacaine plus 25 mcg fentanyl or 15 mg bupivacaine plus 1 mg midazolam, intrathecally.
The duration of anesthesia was much longer in the bupivacaine-midazolam group than the bupivacaine-fentanyl group; both were longer than the plain bupivacaine group (P < 0.05).
Subarachnoid injection of adjuvant midazolam or fentanyl with plain 0.5% bupivacaine in opium abusers in lower limb orthopedic surgery increases the duration of sensory block. Therefore midazolam is more effective than fentanyl in such cases.
Adjuvant; Fentanyl; Intrathecal; Midazolam; Spinal anesthesia
To compare the efficacy and safety of patient controlled epidural analgesia with basal continuous infusion versus intermittent bolus for labor analgesia using fentanyl and bupivacaine.
In this prospective study, 60 parturients having singleton term uncomplicated pregnancy in early active labor were included. 30 parturients were allocated to receive patient controlled epidural analgesia + basal continuous infusion (Group-A) and 30 received intermittent bolus on demand (Group-B). Efficacy of technique was assessed in terms of quality of analgesia on 0–10 cm verbal analogue scale. Effect on labor was assessed by duration of labor, mode of delivery, and parturient’s satisfaction. Neonatal outcome was measured by Apgar score. Data were expressed as mean ± SD and analysed using Student ‘t’ test and chi square test where appropriate. P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Analgesic efficacy of both the groups was comparable. Maternal satisfaction was better in group A than in group B but the results did not achieve statistical significance. Effect on labor and neonatal outcome were comparable.
Both the techniques appear to be safe for the mother and neonate with excellent analgesic efficacy. In a busy obstetric unit with increased demand of epidural analgesia, patient controlled epidural analgesia with basal continuous infusion may be preferred.
Patient controlled epidural analgesia; Basal continuous infusion; Intermittent bolus; Fentanyl; Bupivacaine
Previous trials have documented failure of block augmentation with epidural volume extension, when applied after the intrathecal injection of hyperbaric bupivacaine was made in sitting position. However, there is no study comparing the effect of change in patient position during block performance, on the results of epidural volume extension.
Materials and Methods:
The study was conducted in two parts in American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status I or II parturients scheduled for elective cesarean section under regional anesthesia. In the first part, 28 patients were randomized to one of the two groups, depending on whether epidural volume extension was applied following the block in sitting (group SE) or lateral position (group LE) (n=14 each). In the second part of the study another 28 patients were recruited and randomized to receive the block in sitting (group S) or lateral (group L) position (n=14 each), without epidural volume extension. All patients received combined spinal epidural block using needle-through-needle technique with intrathecal injection of 9 mg hyperbaric bupivacaine (0.5%) and 10 μg fentanyl. Epidural volume extension was performed using 5 ml normal saline in groups SE and LE.
In the first part of the study, the maximum sensory block level was higher in group LE vs. SE (P<0.05). In the second part of the study, no significant difference was seen in the maximum sensory level between group S and group L (P>0.05).
If epidural volume extension is being applied with intention of rapid extension of sensory block when hyperbaric bupivacaine has been injected intrathecally, the combined spinal epidural block should be performed in lateral position rather than in the sitting position.
Cesarean section; combined spinal epidural; epidural volume extension; hyperbaric bupivacaine; patient position
Neuraxial analgesia is widely accepted as the most effective and the least depressant method of providing pain relief in labor. Over the last several decades neuraxial labor analgesia techniques and medications have progressed to the point now where they provide high quality pain relief with minimal side effects to both the mother and the fetus while maximizing the maternal autonomy possible for the parturient receiving neuraxial analgesia. The introduction of the combined spinal epidural technique for labor has allowed for the rapid onset of analgesia with minimal motor blockade, therefore allowing the comfortable parturient to ambulate. Patient-controlled epidural analgesia techniques have evolved to allow for more flexible analgesia that is tailored to the individual needs of the parturient and effective throughout the different phases of labor. Computer integrated systems have been studied to provide seamless analgesia from induction of neuraxial block to delivery. New adjuvant drugs that improve the effectiveness of neuraxial labor analgesia while decreasing the side effects that may occur due to high dose of a single drug are likely to be added to future labor analgesia practice. Bupivacaine still remains a popular choice of local anesthetic for labor analgesia. New local anesthetics with less cardiotoxicity have been introduced, but their cost effectiveness in the current labor analgesia practice has been questioned.
labor; neuraxial; analgesia; neuraxial labor analgesia
A study to compare the efficacy between fentanyl and sufentanil combined with low concentration (0.0625%) of bupivacaine for epidural labor analgesia in laboring women
Materials and Methods:
Fifty full term parturients received an initial bolus dose of a 10 ml solution containing 0.125% bupivacaine. The patients were randomly divided into two: group F received 0.0625% bupivacaine with 2.5 mcg/ml fentanyl and group S received 0.0625% bupivacaine with 0.25 mcg/ml sufentanil. Verbal analogue pain scores, need of supplementary/rescue boluses dose of bupivacaine consumed, mode of delivery, maternal satisfaction, and neonatal Apgar scores were recorded. No significant difference was observed between both groups.
Both the groups provided equivalent labor analgesia and maternal satisfaction. The chances of cesarean delivery were also not increased in any group. No difference in the cephalad extent of sensory analgesia, motor block or neonatal Apgar score were observed. Although mean pain scores throughout the labor and delivery were similar in both groups, more patients in fentanyl group required supplementary boluses though not statistically significant.
We conclude that both 0.0625% bupivacaine-fentanyl (2.5 μg/ml) and 0.0625% bupivacaine-sufentanil (0.25 μg/ml) were equally effective by continuous epidural infusion in providing labor analgesia with hemodynamic stability achieving equivalent maternal satisfaction without serious maternal or fetal side effects. We found that sufentanil was 10 times more potent than fentanyl as an analgesic for continuous epidural labor analgesia.
Labor analgesia; bupivacaine fentanyl; sufentanil; epidural analgesia
Anesthetic management of laboring parturients with Arnold-Chiari type I malformation poses a difficult challenge for the anesthesiologist. The increase in intracranial pressure during uterine contractions, coughing, valsalva maneuvers, and expulsion of the fetus can be detrimental to the mother during the process of labor and delivery. No concrete evidence has implicated high cerebral spinal fluid pressure on maternal and fetal complications. The literature on the use of neuraxial techniques for managing parturients with Arnold-Chiari is extremely scarce. While most anesthesiologists advocate epidural analgesia for management of labor pain and spinal anesthesia for cesarean section, we are the first to report the use of combined spinal-epidural analgesia for managing labor pain in a pregnant woman with Arnold-Chiari type I malformation. Also, we have reviewed the literature and presented information from case reports and case series to support the safe usage of neuraxial techniques in these patients.
Background: Spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine may produce more predictable and reliable anesthesia than plain ropivacaine for cesarean section. The dose-response relation for spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine is undetermined. This double-blind, randomized, dose-response study determined the ED50 (50% effective dose) and ED95 (95% effective dose) of spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine for cesarean section anesthesia. Methods: Sixty parturients undergoing elective cesarean section delivery with use of combined spinal-epidural anesthesia were enrolled in this study. An epidural catheter was placed at the L1~L2 vertebral interspace, then lumbar puncture was performed at the L3~L4 vertebral interspace, and parturients were randomized to receive spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine in doses of 10.5 mg, 12 mg, 13.5 mg, or 15 mg in equal volumes of 3 ml. Sensory levels (pinprick) were assessed every 2.5 min until a T7 level was achieved and motor changes were assessed by modified Bromage Score. A dose was considered effective if an upper sensory level to pin prick of T7 or above was achieved and no intraoperative epidural supplement was required. ED50 and ED95 were determined with use of a logistic regression model. Results: ED50 (95% confidence interval) of spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine was determined to be 10.37 (5.23~11.59) mg and ED95 (95% confidence interval) to be 15.39 (13.81~23.59) mg. The maximum sensory block levels and the duration of motor block and the rate of hypotension, but not onset of anesthesia, were significantly related to the ropivacaine dose. Conclusion: The ED50 and ED95 of spinal hyperbaric ropivacaine for cesarean delivery under the conditions of this study were 10.37 mg and 15.39 mg, respectively. Ropivacaine is suitable for spinal anesthesia in cesarean delivery.
Anesthesia; Obstetric; Cesarean section; Anesthetics local; Ropivacaine; Anesthetic techniques; Subarachnoid; Dose-response
Intrathecal neostigmine produces analgesia, but also severe nausea. In contrast, epidural neostigmine enhances opioid and local anesthetic analgesia without causing nausea. Previous studies examined only single epidural neostigmine bolus administration and did not assess the efficacy of continuous epidural infusion or several aspects of maternal and fetal safety. We therefore tested the hypothesis that epidural neostigmine in combination with bupivacaine by continuous infusion during labor would reduce the amount of bupivacaine required.
Twelve healthy women scheduled for elective cesarean delivery were assigned to receive epidural neostigmine, 40 μg (first 6 subjects) or 80 μg (second 6 subjects) as a single bolus, with fetal heart rate and uterine contractions monitored for 20 minutes. In a subsequent experiment, 40 healthy laboring women were randomized to receive bupivacaine 1.25 mg/mL alone or with neostigmine 4 μg/mL by patient-controlled epidural analgesia. The primary outcome measure was hourly bupivacaine use.
Epidural neostigmine bolus did not alter baseline fetal heart rate, induce contractions or produce nausea. Epidural neostigmine infusion reduced bupivacaine requirement by 19% in all patients and 25% in those with > 4 hours of treatment (P<0.05 for both), but might have contributed to the incidence of mild sedation. Mode of delivery, incidence of maternal nausea and fetal heart rate abnormality were similar between groups.
These data show that adding epidural neostigmine 4 μg/mL reduces the hourly bupivacaine requirement by 19% to 25% with patient-controlled epidural analgesia during labor. Administered as a bolus and by continuous infusion at the studied doses, epidural neostigmine does not cause nausea and does not induce uterine contractions or fetal heart rate abnormalities, but mild sedation can occur.
Patient controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) is a well established technique for pain relief during labor. But the inclusion of continuous background infusion to PCEA is controversial. The aim of this study was to assess whether the use of continuous infusion along with PCEA was beneficial for laboring women with regards to quality of analgesia, maternal satisfaction and neonatal outcome in comparison to PCEA alone. Fifty five parturients received epidural bolus of 10ml solution containing 0.125% bupivacaine +2 µg.ml−1 of fentanyl. For maintenance of analgesia the patients of Group PCEA self administered 8 ml bolus with lockout interval of 20 minutes of above solution on demand with no basal infusion. While the patients of Group PCEA + CI received continuous epidural infusion at the rate of 10 ml.hr-1 along with self administered boluses of 3 ml with lockout interval of 10 minutes of similar epidural solution. Patients of both groups were given rescue boluses by the anaesthetists for distressing pain. Verbal analogue pain scores, incidence of distressing pain, need of supplementary/rescue boluses, dose of bupivacaine consumed, maternal satisfaction and neonatal Apgar scores were recorded. No significant difference was observed between mean VAS pain scores during labor, maternal satisfaction, mode of delivery or neonatal Apgar scores. But more patients (n=8) required rescue boluses in PCEA group for distressing pain. The total volume consumed of bupivacaine and opioid was slightly more in PCEA + CI group. In both the techniques the highest sensory level, degree of motor block were comparable & prolongation of labor was not seen. It was concluded that both the techniques provided equivalent labor analgesia, maternal satisfaction and neonatal Apgar scores. PCEA along with continuous infusion at the rate of 10 ml/ hr resulted in lesser incidence of distressing pain and need for rescue analgesic. Although this group consumed higher dose of bupivacaine, it did not affect maternal or neonatal safety.
PCEA; Background infusion; Labor analgesia
Intrathecal clonidine prolongs spinal anesthesia but the optimum dose to be used in cesarean delivery is not yet known. We evaluated the effect of addition of intrathecal clonidine to hyperbaric bupivacaine on postoperative pain after lower segment caesarean section.
A total of 105 parturients carrying a singleton fetus at term, scheduled to undergo elective LSCS under spinal anesthesia were randomized in a double blind fashion to one of the three groups. Group BF (n=35) received 2 ml of 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine+25 μg fentanyl, Group BC50 (n=35) received 2 ml of 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine+50 μg clonidine, Group BC75 (n=35) received 2 ml of 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine+75 μg clonidine.
The duration of postoperative analgesia was 184.73±68.64 min in group BF, 360.71±86.51 min in group BC50 and 760.50±284.03 min in group BC75, P<0.001. The incidence of hypotension was comparable, P=0.932, whereas the incidence of nausea and pruritis was significantly lower in groups BC50 and BC75 as compared to group BF, P<0.001. No other side effects of intrathecal clonidine were detected. Neonatal outcome was similar in all the three groups.
Addition of 75 μg clonidine to hyperbaric bupivacaine in spinal anesthesia for LSCS significantly prolongs the duration of postoperative analgesia without any increase in maternal side effects. There was no difference in neonatal outcome.
Caesarean section; clonidine; intrathecal; postoperative pain
Combined spinal epidural (CSE) can provide excellent labor analgesia. Subdural block is also a potential but rare complication of attempted epidural placement during a CSE procedure, which may present as a block that is usually patchy in nature, with a component of sensory and/or motor deficit and a variable duration of action. In addition, a conversion disorder or a functional neurological disorder has been described with epidural and spinal anesthesia in obstetric patients. In this clinical report, we describe a 33-year-old G4P3 at 40 weeks gestation that received an unintentional subdural block as part of her labor analgesia and after an uneventful caesarean delivery presented with a conversion disorder. The rarity of the association between a subdural block and a conversion disorder complicated by the fact that the neurological deficit produced by the subdural block and that produced by a conversion disorder are similar in distribution made the clinical presentation and diagnosis a challenge for the obstetric anesthesia team. A functional neurological disorder of this nature complicating a subdural block in an obstetric anesthesia clinical practice has not been described so far.
Background and Aim:
Intrathecal (IT) neostigmine has been used as an adjunct to spinal anesthesia. The purpose of this study was to determine whether a combination of low-dose neostigmine IT would enhance analgesia of a fixed dose of fentanyl IT, in patients undergoing unilateral total knee replacement (TKR) surgery with spinal anesthesia.
Settings and Design:
Forty-five patients scheduled for unilateral TKR were randomized to one of the three groups (n = 15) and prospectively studied using placebo-controlled, double-blinded design.
Materials and Methods:
A 19-G epidural catheter was introduced through the L3–L4 interspace with patient in the sitting position, followed by spinal anesthesia administration through the L3–L4 interspace. Fifteen milligrams of hyperbaric bupivacaine (3 ml) plus the test drug (0.5 ml) was administered IT. The test drug was normal saline (0.5 ml) in group I; fentanyl 20 mcg (0.4 ml) and normal saline (0.1 ml) in group II; and fentanyl 20 mcg (0.4 ml) and neostigmine 1 mcg (0.1 ml) in group III. Characteristics of sensory and motor block, heart rate, and blood pressure were recorded intraoperatively. Postoperatively, pain scores, postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) scores, and sedation scores, and postoperative analgesic dose were recorded.
Forty-five patients were enrolled in this study and 43 patients were subjected to statistical analysis. Overall 24-h visual analog score in group III was significantly less than in those who received fentanyl alone (P = 0.00). The durations of complete analgesia and effective analgesia were longer for all patients in group III compared with group II (P < 0.05) and group I (P < 0.005) patients. The total number of epidural top ups (rescue analgesia) required was less in group II (P < 0.05) and group III (P < 0.005) patients, compared with the control group. The incidence of nausea and vomiting was not increased in group III patients.
The addition of 1 mcg neostigmine IT increased the duration of analgesia and decreased the analgesic consumption in 24 h in TKR. There was no increase in the incidence of adverse effects.
Intrathecal fentanyl; intrathecal neostigmine; spinal neostigmine; total knee replacement surgery