The effects of solution concentration and epinephrine on lateral distribution of hyperbaric tetracaine spinal anesthesia

Départment APSIC, Hôpital Cantonal Universitaire, Geneva, Switzerland.
Anesthesia & Analgesia (Impact Factor: 3.42). 11/1996; 83(4):755-9. DOI: 10.1097/00000539-199610000-00017
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In a search of a differential spinal block between dependent and nondependent sides, we investigated whether the use of a larger concentration of hyperbaric tetracaine (T) and/or the omission of epinephrine (E) would provide differential spread in patients left for 15 min in the lateral decubitus position. Spinal anesthesia was performed in the lateral decubitus position with the operated side dependent in 60 patients scheduled for lower limb surgery. All patients remained lateral for 15 min after spinal injection before being turned supine. They received 12 mg of T in 10% dextrose and E 0.2 mg was added when predicted duration of surgery was more than 90 min. The concentration of T to be used for each patient was randomized. This resulted in four groups of 15 patients: T 0.5% + E (control group), T 1% + E, T 0.5%, and T 1%. A unilateral anesthesia was defined as the presence of an adequate sensory (L-1 or higher) and/or motor (3 degrees) blockade on the dependent side and the absence of one or both modalities on the nondependent side, or as a duration of sensory (regression to L-2) and motor (1 degrees of recovery) blockade 20% longer on the dependent compared to the nondependent side. None of the 60 patients showed unilateral sensory block. A comparable number of patients in all groups showed unilateral motor block: four in T 0.5% + E, two in T 1% + E, four in T 0.5%, and five in T 1%. Likewise, a comparable number of patients in all groups showed a prolonged duration of sensory and motor block, respectively: six and eight in T 0.5% + E, six and nine in T 1% + E, six and eight in T 0.5%, and seven and seven in T 1%. In conclusion, although a preferential distribution of hyperbaric T toward the dependent side in patients of all four groups was noticed, the use of a larger concentration of T, omission of E, or combination of these two factors did not provide a more marked differential spread when compared to the standard solution of T 0.5% + E.

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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:For unilateral spinal block, local anesthetics should affect the spinal nerves of 1 side. With full flexion of the spine, the sunken cauda equina becomes tightened and is suspended in the middle of the subarachnoid space. We performed this study to assess whether spinal flexion facilitates unilateral spinal anesthesia.METHODS:Hyperbaric bupivacaine (8 mg) was administered at the L3-4 interspace through a 25-gauge Quincke needle at a rate of 0.02 mL/s. Patients were randomly allocated to group F (with full spinal flexion) or group N (the hips and back straightened). After maintaining the lateral position for 15 minutes with or without spinal flexion, patients were gently returned to the supine position. Spinal blockade was assessed by loss of pinprick sensation and the modified Bromage motor scale.RESULTS:While the lateral position was maintained, sensory block was noted on the nondependent side in 14 of 16 patients in group N (87.5%) but only in 1 of 16 patients in group F (6.3%) (P < 0.001). The median level of sensory block in group N was L5 on the nondependent side just before turning to the supine position. When patients were returned to the supine position, sensory blockade on the nondependent side was noted in all group N patients (100%) and 15 group F patients (93.7%). The sensory level on the nondependent side between group N and group F were similar after turning supine.CONCLUSIONS:Strict unilateral sensory block was not achieved even after lateral decubitus positioning with spinal flexion, when 8 mg hyperbaric bupivacaine was administered manually at a conventionally slow rate through a beveled spinal needle. However, maintaining flexion of the spinal column during lateral decubitus positioning altered the initial onset of sensory block with respect to laterality.
    Anesthesia and analgesia 09/2013; 117(4). DOI:10.1213/ANE.0b013e3182a1ee53 · 3.42 Impact Factor