Spinal epidural abscess associated with epidural catheterization: report of a case and a review of the literature. (1/613)

We describe a 53-year-old man who developed a catheter-related epidural abscess 8 days after left upper lobectomy for lung cancer. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) was detected in a culture of the epidural pus. Magnetic resonance imaging was essential for the diagnosis of epidural abscess and for determining the extent of spread. The patient was treated by laminectomy and administration of appropriate antibiotics, with almost complete recovery, except for urinary retention. A literature search yielded 29 additional cases of catheter-related epidural abscess. The median duration of catheterization was 4 days and the median time to onset of the clinical symptoms after catheter placement was 8 days. Eleven of the 30 patients had some underlying disorders, including malignancy or herpes zoster, or were receiving steroids. Nine of the 10 patients with thoracic epidural abscess had persistent neurological deficits, whereas 12 of the 15 patients with lumbar epidural abscess showed a full recovery after treatment. Surgical decompression was not required in six patients without significant neurological deficits, who recovered following antibiotic treatment (four patients) or percutaneous drainage (two patients). Thoracic catheters are associated with a disproportionately high incidence of epidural abscess and persistent neurological sequelae following treatment.  (+info)

Comparison of three solutions of ropivacaine/fentanyl for postoperative patient-controlled epidural analgesia. (2/613)

BACKGROUND: Ropivacaine, 0.2%, is a new local anesthetic approved for epidural analgesia. The addition of 4 microg/ml fentanyl improves analgesia from epidural ropivacaine. Use of a lower concentration of ropivacaine-fentanyl may further improve analgesia or decrease side effects. METHODS: Thirty patients undergoing lower abdominal surgery were randomized in a double-blinded manner to receive one of three solutions: 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl 0.1% ropivacaine-2 microg fentanyl, or 0.05% ropivacaine-1 microg fentanyl for patient-controlled epidural analgesia after standardized combined epidural and general anesthesia. Patient-controlled epidural analgesia settings and adjustments for the three solutions were standardized to deliver equivalent drug doses. Pain scores (rest, cough, and ambulation), side effects (nausea, pruritus, sedation, motor block, hypotension, and orthostasis), and patient-controlled epidural analgesia consumption were measured for 48 h. RESULTS: All three solutions produced equivalent analgesia. Motor block was significantly more common (30 vs. 0%) and more intense with the 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl solution. Other side effects were equivalent between solutions and mild in severity. A significantly smaller volume of 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl solution was used, whereas the 0.1% ropivacaine-2 microg fentanyl group used a significantly greater amount of ropivacaine and fentanyl. CONCLUSIONS: Lesser concentrations of ropivacaine and fentanyl provide comparable analgesia with less motor block despite the use of similar amounts of ropivacaine and fentanyl. This finding suggests that concentration of local anesthetic solution at low doses is a primary determinant of motor block with patient-controlled epidural analgesia after lower abdominal surgery.  (+info)

Ballistic shock wave lithotripsy in an 18-year-old thoroughbred gelding. (3/613)

Prolonged postoperative recuperation time and restricted exercise were circumvented by using ballistic shock wave lithotripsy to break up an 8-cm diameter vesical calculus and by flushing out the sand-like residue under epidural anesthesia with the horse standing. Recovery was uneventful.  (+info)

Assessing introduction of spinal anaesthesia for obstetric procedures. (4/613)

To assess the impact of introducing spinal anaesthesia for obstetric operative procedures on use of general anaesthesia and quality of regional anaesthesia in a unit with an established epidural service a retrospective analysis of routinely collected data on method of anaesthesia, efficacy, and complications was carried out. Data were collected from 1988 to 1991 on 1670 obstetric patients requiring an operative procedure. The introduction of spinal anaesthesia in 1989 significantly reduced the proportion of operative procedures performed under general anaesthesia, from 60% (234/390) in 1988 to 30% (124/414) in 1991. The decrease was most pronounced for manual removal of the placenta (88%, 48/55 v 9%, 3/34) and emergency caesarean section (67%, 129/193) v 38%, 87/229). Epidural anaesthesia decreased in use most significantly for elective caesarean section (65%, 77/118 v 3% 3/113; x2=139, p<0.0001). The incidence of severe pain and need for conversion to general anaesthesia was significantly less with spinal anaesthesia (0%, 0/207 v 3%, 5/156; p<0.05). Hypotension was not a problem, and the incidence of headache after spinal anaesthetic decreased over the period studied. Introducing spinal anaesthesia therefore reduced the need for general anaesthesia and improved the quality of regional anaesthesia.  (+info)

Quantitative and selective assessment of sensory block during lumbar epidural anaesthesia with 1% or 2% lidocaine. (5/613)

We have examined sensory block during lumbar epidural anaesthesia using a cutaneous current perception threshold (CPT) sensory testing device in 20 patients who received 10 ml of either 1% or 2% lidocaine (lignocaine). CPT at 2000, 250 and 5 Hz stimulation at the trigeminal (V), ninth thoracic (T9) and second lumbar (L2) dermatomes, and dermatomal levels of block to light touch, temperature and pinprick discrimination were measured before and every 5 min until 60 min after epidural lidocaine. There were significant differences between 1% and 2% epidural lidocaine in all CPT at T9 and L2, in addition to maximal cephalad spread of the three sensory modalities. After 2% lidocaine, all CPT increased significantly at T9 and L2. In contrast, only at 250 and 5 Hz for L2 did epidural block with 1% lidocaine produce significant increases in CPT. Maximal level of loss of touch sensation after 1% lidocaine was significantly lower than that of cold and pinprick sensations. We conclude that the dose of lidocaine affected intensity of sensory block during lumbar epidural anaesthesia. In addition, differential neural block resulting from epidural anaesthesia appeared to be associated with a differential effect on nerve fibres of different sizes.  (+info)

Epidural catheter tip position and distribution of injectate evaluated by computed tomography. (6/613)

BACKGROUND: The distribution of solutions injected into the epidural space has not been determined. The author therefore examined the site of catheter tips and the spread of contrast material in the epidural space using computed tomographic (CT) imaging in patients receiving successful epidural analgesia. METHODS: Lumbar epidural catheters were placed in 20 female patients by a midline technique. Anesthetic effect was determined by motor and sensory examinations during analgesic infusion. CT images were obtained for identification of the catheter tip and after radiographic contrast injection of 4 ml and then an additional 10 ml. RESULTS: Catheter tips were most often found lateral to the dura in the intervertebral foramen. In these subjects with normally functioning epidural analgesia, there was remarkable interindividual variability in patterns of spread, including various amounts of anterior passage, layering along the dura, and compression of the dura creating a posterior fold. Accumulation becomes more symmetric with increasing injectate volume. Spread through the intervertebral foramina was seen in all subjects. Air and fat in the region of the catheter interfered with solution spread in three subjects, but only over a limited area. Asymmetry in anesthetic effect was attributable to catheter position. No substantial barriers to solution spread were observed. CONCLUSIONS: A variety of catheter tip positions and patterns of solution spread underlie normal epidural anesthesia. Nonuniform distribution of injectate is common and is compatible with uniform anesthesia. Posterior midline structures play a minimal role in impeding distribution of injectate. A far lateral catheter position is a more common cause of asymmetric block than anatomic barriers to solution spread.  (+info)

Anaesthetic management of a woman who became paraplegic at 22 weeks' gestation after a spontaneous spinal cord haemorrhage secondary to a presumed arteriovenous malformation. (7/613)

A 19-yr-old woman developed a paraplegia with a T10 sensory level at 22 weeks' gestation. The spinal injury was caused by spontaneous bleed of a presumed arteriovenous malformation in the spinal cord. She presented for Caesarean section at term because of the breech position of her fetus. The successful use of a combined spinal epidural-regional anaesthetic is described and the risks of general and regional anaesthesia are discussed.  (+info)

Spinal versus epidural anesthesia for cesarean section in severely preeclamptic patients: a retrospective survey. (8/613)

BACKGROUND: Selection of spinal anesthesia for severely preeclamptic patients requiring cesarean section is controversial. Significant maternal hypotension is believed to be more likely with spinal compared with epidural anesthesia. The purpose of this study was to assess, in a large retrospective clinical series, the blood pressure effects of spinal and epidural anesthesia in severely preeclamptic patients requiring cesarean section. METHODS: The computerized medical records database was reviewed for all preeclamptic patients having cesarean section between January 1, 1989 and December 31, 1996. All nonlaboring severely preeclamptic patients receiving either spinal or epidural anesthesia for cesarean section were included for analysis. The lowest recorded blood pressures were compared for the 20-min period before induction of regional anesthesia, the period from induction of regional anesthesia to delivery, and the period from delivery to the end of operation. RESULTS: Study groups included 103 women receiving spinal anesthesia and 35 receiving epidural anesthesia. Changes in the lowest mean blood pressure were similar after epidural or spinal anesthesia. Intraoperative ephedrine use was similar for both groups. Intraoperative crystalloid administration was statistically greater for patients receiving spinal versus epidural anesthesia (1780 +/- 838 vs. 1359 +/- 674 ml, respectively). Neonatal Apgar scores and incidence of maternal intensive care unit admission or postoperative pulmonary edema were also similar. CONCLUSION: Although we cannot exclude the possibility that the spinal and epidural anesthesia groups were dissimilar, the magnitudes of maternal blood pressure declines were similar after spinal or epidural anesthesia in this series of severely preeclamptic patients receiving cesarean section. Maternal and fetal outcomes also were similar.  (+info)