Perioperative pain management in major reconstructive surgery in pediatric urology : A plea for continuous epidural anesthesia - Abstract

Klinik für Kinderurologie in Kooperation mit dem Lehrstuhl für Urologie, Universität Regensburg, Klinik St. Hedwig, Steinmetzstraße 3, 93049, Regensburg, Deutschland.


Regional analgesia is firmly established in modern pediatric anesthetic practice and its popularity continues to grow. In our department continuous epidural anesthesia (CEA) is a frequently used technique of pain management following major reconstructive procedures of the lower urinary tract. The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy, safety, and potential benefits of CEA over standard analgesics.We retrospectively reviewed the records of 21 infants who underwent single-stage bladder exstrophy repair in our department. In 15 children an epidural catheter was placed preoperatively for CEA; 6 patients treated without CEA served as controls. Total doses of narcotics and analgesics, length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay and ventilatory assistance, time to first bowel activity, anticholinergic requirements, and CEA-related side effects were documented and compared for both groups.Children given epidural anesthesia required six- to tenfold lower doses of morphine intra- and postoperatively compared to those without CEA; ventilatory support upon completion of surgery was remarkably shorter (59 versus 210 min) in the CEA group as well as ICU stay (1.1 versus 1.8 days). The total consumption of anticholinergics was twice as high as in patients without CEA. There were no relevant CEA-related complications.Being a retrospective audit of practice in our institution with a small number of patients, our results are in line with previously published data on CEA in pediatric patients. CEA has been shown to significantly reduce the need for anesthetics and morphine and allows early extubation with all subsequent advantages for a speedy recovery post surgery. Thus, the technique is to be recommended as a safe and efficacious method for pain management following major reconstructive surgery in pediatric urology. Importantly, this type of anesthesia should be performed only by experienced anesthesiologists in institutions where appropriate equipment, staff, and monitoring are available.

Article in German.

Written by:
Rubenwolf PC, Koller B, Rübben I, Ebert AK, Pohl F, Rösch WH.   Are you the author?

Reference: Urologe A. 2011 Apr 20. Epub ahead of print.
doi: 10.1007/s00120-011-2527-5

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 21503665 Pediatric Urology Section