Addition of dexmedetomidine to bupivacaine in supraclavicular brachial plexus block

Recep Aksu, Cihangir Bicer


Purpose: Research is ongoing to determine the lowest dose of local anesthetics in brachial plexus block that provides adequate anesthesia and postoperative analgesia and reduces complications related to local anesthetics.

Methods: Patients 18-65 years of age who underwent upper limb surgery and who received ultrasound-guided supraclavicular brachial plexus block at the Erciyes University Faculty of Medicine Hospital between February 2014 and January 2015 were included in the study (n=50). Supraclavicular brachial plexus blocks were performed on Group B cases by adding 30 ml 0.33% bupivacaine and on Group BD cases by adding 15 ml 0.33% bupivacaine and 1 µg / kg dexmedetomidine. Block success was evaluated by the onset and block duration of motor and sensory block and the duration of analgesia.

Results: The block success of Group B and Group BD was 92.6% and 89.3%, respectively (P = 1.000). Onset time of sensory block, degree of sensory block, duration of sensory block, onset time of motor block, degree of motor block and duration of motor block were similar in both groups in the intergroup comparison (P > 0.05). Duration of analgesia and the operative conditions of groups were similar (P > 0.05).

Conclusions: In the implementation of ultrasound-guided supraclavicular brachial plexus block, block success, sensory and motor block and analgesia duration were similar for patients anaesthetized with 30 ml of bupivacaine in comparison with dexmedetomidine+bupivacaine (when the bupivacaine dose was reduced by 50% by the addition of the adjuvant).

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