Brachial plexus block with or without ultrasound guidance.

Division of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet, 0027 Oslo, Norway.
Current opinion in anaesthesiology (Impact Factor: 2.53). 07/2009; 22(5):655-60. DOI: 10.1097/ACO.0b013e32832eb7d3
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Should ultrasound or nerve stimulation be used for brachial plexus blocks? We investigated last year's literature to help answer this question.
Many of the reports concluded that ultrasound guidance may provide a higher success rate for brachial plexus blocks than guidance by nerve stimulator. However, the studies were not large enough to conclude that ultrasound will reduce the risk of nerve injury, local anesthetic toxicity or pneumothorax. Ultrasound may reveal anatomical variations of importance for performing brachial plexus blocks. For postoperative analgesia, 5 ml of ropivacaine 0.5% has been sufficient for an ultrasound-guided interscalene block. For peroperative anesthesia, as much as 42 ml of a local anesthetic mixture was calculated to be appropriate for an ultrasound-guided supraclavicular method. For the future, we notice that three-dimensional and four-dimensional ultrasound technology may facilitate visualizing the needle, the nerves and the local anesthetic distribution. Impedance measurements may be helpful for nerve blocks not guided by ultrasound.
We think that the literature gives a sufficient basis to recommend the use of ultrasound for guidance of brachial plexus blocks. The potential for ultrasound to improve efficacy and reduce complications of brachial plexus blocks requires larger scaled studies.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Brachial plexus injury is a potential complication of a brachial plexus block or vessel puncture. It results from direct needle trauma, neurotoxicity of injection agents and hematoma formation. The neurological presentation may range from minor transient pain to severe sensory disturbance or motor loss with poor recovery. The management includes conservative treatment and surgical exploration. Especially if a hematoma forms, it should be removed promptly. Comprehensive knowledge of anatomy and adept skills are crucial to avoid nerve injuries. Whenever possible, the patient should not be heavily sedated and should be encouraged to immediately inform the doctor of any experience of numbness/paresthesia during the nerve block or vessel puncture.
    The Korean journal of pain 07/2014; 27(3):210-8. DOI:10.3344/kjp.2014.27.3.210
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Sacrococcygeal epidural anaesthesia allows selective desensitisation of the sacral plexus. Ultrasound is used for guidance in human anaesthesia to facilitate sacrococcygeal epidural injections. The aims of this study were to describe the sonographic appearance of the sacrococcygeal region in dogs and a technique for performing epidural injection at this location under ultrasound guidance. In the preliminary part of the study four cadavers were used to describe the sonoanatomy of the sacrococcygeal space and to develop the ultrasound-guided puncture technique. In the second phase of the study this technique was repeated in four dogs under general anaesthesia. In all dogs the sacrococcygeal space appeared as a circular hypoechoic region, located caudal to the sacral caudal articular processes, delimited by bony hyperechoic structures such as body and arch of the first caudal vertebra. Ultrasound guidance allowed the operator to visualise and position the spinal needle into the sacrococcygeal epidural space. No complications were reported during this procedure. Preliminary results indicate that ultrasound-guided sacrococcygeal epidural anaesthesia may be considered as an alternative to a blind approach technique.
    05/2014; 175(3). DOI:10.1136/vr.102453
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ultrasound (US) of chest, even with inherent limitations of the US beam and air, has been useful in many paediatric chest conditions. It has extended its role and is now widely used by many subspecialists in medicine. This review article will cover techniques, indications, and applications of chest US in neonates, infants and children, including also different common as well as some rare and modern aspects and applications, such as pleural effusion, pneumothorax, pulmonary lesions, mediastinum, diaphragm, and chest wall. Other related imaging modalities are also briefly discussed.
    European Journal of Radiology 09/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.ejrad.2014.04.011 · 2.16 Impact Factor