Outcome after regional anaesthesia in the ambulatory setting--is it really worth it?
Regional anaesthesia provides a continuum of perioperative care that includes perioperative pain management, decreased opioid requirements and decreased post-operative nausea and vomiting. In addition to these benefits, a wide variety of perioperative outcomes can be enhanced by utilizing regional anaesthesia in the ambulatory setting. Regional anaesthesia has been shown to improve the cardiovascular, pulmonary, gastrointestinal, coagulative, immunological and cognitive functions and to be of benefit in an economic context. These improvements are particularly advantageous in caring for elderly and high-risk patient populations undergoing surgery. In addition, regional anaesthesia can facilitate early recovery with excellent post-operative analgesia and few side-effects, which may decrease overall operative costs. This chapter identifies important perioperative outcomes that may be positively influenced by the use of regional anaesthesia in the ambulatory setting.
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