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      Effect of dexamethasone added to lidocaine in supraclavicular brachial plexus block: A prospective, randomised, double-blind study

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          Abstract

          Background:

          Different additives have been used to prolong brachial plexus block. We performed a prospective, randomised, double-blind study to evaluate the effect of dexamethasone added to lidocaine on the onset and duration of supraclavicular brachial plexus block as this is the most common type of brachial block performed in our institute.

          Methods:

          Sixty American Society of Anaesthesiologist's physical status I and II patients undergoing elective hand, forearm and elbow surgery under brachial plexus block were randomly allocated to receive either 1.5% lidocaine (7 mg/kg) with adrenaline (1:200,000) and 2 ml of normal saline (group C, n=30) or 1.5% lidocaine (7 mg/kg) with adrenaline (1:200,000) and 2 ml of dexamethasone (8 mg) (group D, n=30). The block was performed using a nerve stimulator. Onset and duration of sensory and motor blockade were assessed. The sensory and motor blockade of radial, median, ulnar and musculocutaneous nerves were evaluated and recorded at 5, 10, 20, 120 min, and at every 30 min thereafter.

          Results:

          Two patients were excluded from the study because of block failure. The onset of sensory and motor blockade (13.4±2.8 vs. 16.0±2.3 min and 16.0±2.7 vs. 18.7±2.8 min, respectively) were significantly more rapid in the dexamethasone group than in the control group ( P=0.001). The duration of sensory and motor blockade (326±58.6 vs. 159±20.1 and 290.6±52.7 vs. 135.5±20.3 min, respectively) were significantly longer in the dexamethasone group than in the control group ( P=0.001).

          Conclusion:

          Addition of dexamethasone to 1.5% lidocaine with adrenaline in supraclavicular brachial plexus block speeds the onset and prolongs the duration of sensory and motor blockade.

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          Most cited references 17

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          Local corticosteroid application blocks transmission in normal nociceptive C-fibres.

          The effect of a locally applied depot form of a corticosteroid on the electrical properties of nerves was investigated in an experimental model. The segmental transmission in electrically stimulated A-fibres and in C-fibres of the plantar nerve in the anaesthetized rat was utilized. A drop of methylprednisolone acetate or vehicle constituent was placed on the dissected plantar nerve proximal to the stimulating electrodes after recording control responses (A-fibre volley in the sciatic nerve and C-fibre evoked reflex discharge in flexor motoneurons). The corticosteroid was found to suppress the transmission in thin unmyelinated C-fibres but not in myelinated A-beta fibres. The effect was found to be due to the corticosteroid per se. The effect was reversed when the corticosteroid was removed, which suggests a direct membrane action.
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            Ultrasound-guided supraclavicular approach for regional anesthesia of the brachial plexus.

            We prospectively studied 40 patients (ASA grades I-III) undergoing surgery of the forearm and hand, to investigate the use of ultrasonic cannula guidance for supraclavicular brachial plexus block and its effect on success rate and frequency of complications. Patients were randomized into Group S (supraclavicular paravascular approach; n = 20) and Group A (axillary approach; n = 20). Ultrasonographic study of the plexus sheath was done. After visualization of the anatomy, the plexus sheath was penetrated using a 24-gauge cannula. Plexus block was performed using 30 mL bupivacaine 0.5%. Onset of sensory and motor block of the radial, ulnar, and median nerves was recorded in 10-min intervals for 1 h. Satisfactory surgical anesthesia was attained in 95% of both groups. In Group A, 25% showed an incomplete sensory block of the musculocutaneous nerve, whereas all patients in Group S had a block of this nerve. Complete sensory block of the radial, median, and ulnar nerves was attained after an average of 40 min without a significant difference between the two groups. Because of the direct ultrasonic view of the cervical pleura, we had no cases of pneumothorax. An accidental puncture of subclavian or axillary vessels, as well as neurologic damage, was avoided in all cases. An ultrasonography-guided approach for supraclavicular block combines the safety of axillary block with the larger extent of block of the supraclavicular approach.
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              Dexamethasone added to lidocaine prolongs axillary brachial plexus blockade.

              Different additives have been used to prolong regional blockade. We designed a prospective, randomized, double-blind study to evaluate the effect of dexamethasone added to lidocaine on the onset and duration of axillary brachial plexus block. Sixty patients scheduled for elective hand and forearm surgery under axillary brachial plexus block were randomly allocated to receive either 34 mL lidocaine 1.5% with 2 mL of isotonic saline chloride (control group, n = 30) or 34 mL lidocaine 1.5% with 2 mL of dexamethasone (8 mg) (dexamethasone group, n = 30). Neither epinephrine nor bicarbonate was added to the treatment mixture. We used a nerve stimulator and multiple stimulations technique in all of the patients. After performance of the block, sensory and motor blockade of radial, median, musculocutaneous, and ulnar nerves were recorded at 5, 15, and 30 min. The onset time of the sensory and motor blockade was defined as the time between last injection and the total abolition of the pinprick response and complete paralysis. The duration of sensory and motor blocks were considered as the time interval between the administration of the local anesthetic and the first postoperative pain and complete recovery of motor functions. Sixteen patients were excluded because of unsuccessful blockade. The duration of surgery and the onset times of sensory and motor block were similar in the two groups. The duration of sensory (242 +/- 76 versus 98 +/- 33 min) and motor (310 +/- 81 versus 130 +/- 31 min) blockade were significantly longer in the dexamethasone than in the control group (P < 0.01). We conclude that the addition of dexamethasone to lidocaine 1.5% solution in axillary brachial plexus block prolongs the duration of sensory and motor blockade.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Indian J Anaesth
                Indian J Anaesth
                IJA
                Indian Journal of Anaesthesia
                Medknow Publications & Media Pvt Ltd (India )
                0019-5049
                0976-2817
                Mar-Apr 2013
                : 57
                : 2
                : 180-184
                Affiliations
                Department of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care, BLDEU's Shri B. M. Patil Medical College and Research Institute, Bijapur, India
                [1 ]Department of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care, Kasturba Medical College Mangalore, India
                [2 ]Department of Anaesthesiology, Yenapoya Medical College, Mangalore, Karnataka, India
                Author notes
                Address for correspondence: Dr. Prashant A Biradar, H No. LIG-70, Adarsh Nagar, Ashram Road, Bijapur - 586 103, Karnataka, India. E-mail: drprashanth9191@ 123456yahoo.co.in
                Article
                IJA-57-180
                10.4103/0019-5049.111850
                3696267
                23825819
                Copyright: © Indian Journal of Anaesthesia

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Categories
                Clinical Investigation

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