Year : 2016  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 536-541

Postoperative analgesia for arthroscopic shoulder surgery: comparison between ultrasound-guided interscalene block and combined suprascapular and axillary nerve blocks

Department of Anesthesia, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Abdalla Waleed
20 Taksem Al-Awkaf, Presidential Palace Street, Al-Sawah, Cairo, 11646
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1687-7934.198260

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Background Arthroscopic shoulder surgery is often associated with severe postoperative pain that is often significant enough to interfere with initial recovery and rehabilitation − the pain that can be difficult to manage without large-dose opioids. Opioids can cause nausea, vomiting, sedation, and/or failure to control pain. Supplementing general anesthesia with a regional nerve block might improve the quality of postoperative pain relief. The use of interscalene blockade (ISB) is gaining popularity, but it is associated with infrequent but potentially serious complications. Combined suprascapular nerve block and axillary nerve block (SSNB+ANB) can offer a safe alternative to ISB. Objective This study was designed to compare between ISB and SSNB+ANB in arthroscopic shoulder surgery as regards postoperative analgesia Patients and methods Sixty American Society of Anesthesiologist physical status I and II patients, aged between 18 and 40 years, scheduled for arthroscopic shoulder surgery were randomized to receive ISB or SSNB+ANB. After performing the blocks, general anesthesia was standardized in all groups. All the patients in the two groups were compared as regards postoperative pain assessed by the visual analog scale score at postanesthesia care unit, 4, 6, 12, and 24 h, occurrence of complications, and patient’s satisfaction. Results In the postoperative period, there were no statistically significant differences between the two groups as regards visual analog scale and analgesic requirements. Complications such as Horner’s syndrome, hoarseness of voice, major weakness of the upper arm, and dyspnea were recorded in the ISB group. Conclusion For certain procedures of shoulder arthroscopic surgery, SSNB+ANB is a safe and effective alternative to ISB as postoperative analgesia.

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