The sequence of administration of 1.5% mepivacaine and 0.5% bupivacaine does not affect latency of block onset or duration of analgesia in ultrasound-guided interscalene block.
BACKGROUND: During peripheral nerve blockade, different local anesthetics may be sequentially administered. Typically, a short- or intermediate-acting local anesthetic is administered before a long-acting local anesthetic to achieve a block with rapid onset and long duration. However, there is a paucity of data on advantages of such sequencing. We hypothesized that when using a sequential mixture of mepivacaine and bupivacaine for ultrasound-guided interscalene block, the order of injection of the drugs does not influence the clinical characteristics of the block achieved. METHODS: Sixty-four patients undergoing arthroscopic shoulder surgery (aged 18-65 years; ASA physical status I-II) with a single-injection ultrasound-guided interscalene brachial plexus block as sole anesthetic were studied. The subjects were randomized to receive 1 of 2 local anesthetic sequences: 15 mL of mepivacaine 1.5% followed by 15 mL of bupivacaine 0.5% (group A), or the same local anesthetics in the reverse order (group B). The durations of sensory and motor block were the primary outcomes. Block onset was also assessed. RESULTS: Duration of motor block was similar between group A and group B (10.1 ± 4.7 hours vs 10.3 ± 5.1 hours, mean difference 0.2 hours, 95% confidence interval [CI] -3.3 to 2.9, P = 0.9). Duration of analgesia was also similar between group A and group B (9.5 ± 5.6 hours vs 10.2 ± 4.5 hours, mean difference 0.7 hours, 95% CI -3.2 to 1.9, P = 0.42). Onset of sensory block was similar between the 2 groups (15.9 ± 7.1 minutes for group A, 13.9 ± 7.0 minutes for group B, mean difference 1.9 minutes, 95% CI -1.4 to 5.2, P = 0.25). CONCLUSIONS: The sequence in which 15 mL mepivacaine 1.5% and 15 mL bupivacaine 0.5% are administered does not seem to have a clinically meaningful effect on duration or onset of ultrasound-guided interscalene brachial plexus block.
Gadsden, J; Shariat, A; Hadzic, A; Xu, D; Patel, V; Maliakal, T
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