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A Journal on Anesthesiology, Resuscitation, Analgesia and Intensive Care

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Anesthesiology, Analgesia, Resuscitation and Intensive Care
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Minerva Anestesiologica 2003 May;69(5):428-32


language: Italian

Prevention of cardiovascular accidents during locoregional anesthesia

Pavesi M.

Servizio di Anestesia Polispecialistica, Istituto Policlinico S. Donato, San Donato Milanese, Italia


Cardiovascular complications can be divided into 2 big categories involving the cardiovascular system in locoregional anaesthesia: those of local anaesthetics with direct effect on sympathetic fibres, which regulate the cardiovascular activity and those who derives from alteration of the normal cardiac function due to the toxic effect of the drugs. While the first are referred to the extension of a central block, the second considers the overdose caused by accidental intravenous injection. This is more frequent in peripheral blocks then in central blocks. The use of catheters in both central and peripheral blocks introduces another factor of risk due to a prolonged administration of local anaesthetics. The prevention of those complications should foresee through an accurate anamnesis the subjective conditions of risk: so we have to choose the best individual technique and dose of anaesthetics; the use of qualitative correct material, the ENS as a support to identify nerve structures and the application of more recent and safe drugs represented by the compound of S(-) enantiomers, Ropivacaine and Levobupivacaine. Which are described to be less cardiotoxic but with the same characteristics as Bupivacaine. Finally don’t forget respect the classical rules of security during locoregional anaesthesia.

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