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ABSTRACT: Although local anesthesia usually is used in surgical procedures, field or nerve blocks can provide more effective anesthesia in some situations. In a field block, local anesthetic is infiltrated around the border of the surgical field, leaving the operative area undisturbed. In field blocks, epinephrine may be added to the anesthetic to enhance vasoconstriction and prolong the duration of anesthesia. In a nerve block, anesthetic is injected directly adjacent to the nerve supplying the surgical field. A review of regional anatomy and the location of nerves and other important structures is essential before administering the injection. Systemic toxicity is rare with regional anesthesia and can be prevented by using the smallest dose possible and aspirating before the injection. Supraorbital, supratrochlear, infraorbital, and mental nerve blocks can provide adequate anesthesia in procedures on parts of the face. Field block also may be considered when operating on the ear or lips.
ABSTRACT: The hand can be anesthetized effectively with blocks of the median, ulnar, or radial nerve. Each digit is supplied by four digital nerves, which can be blocked with injections on each side of the digit. Anterior or posterior ankle blocks can be used for regional anesthesia for the foot. The anterior ankle block, which is used for procedures on the dorsum of the foot, involves blocking the saphenous nerve, and superficial and deep peroneal nerves. The posterior ankle block, which is used to anesthetize the sole of the foot, involves blocking the sural and posterior tibial nerves. Paracervical block is used for procedures on the cervix, such as loop electrocauterization or conization. Dorsal penile block has been the most commonly recommended anesthetic technique for neonatal circumcision. A safe and effective alternative is the application of anesthetic cream over the skin to be circumcised.
Adult Circumcision - Article
ABSTRACT: Adult circumcision can be performed under local or regional anesthesia. Medical indications for this procedure include phimosis, paraphimosis, recurrent balanitis and posthitis (inflammation of the prepuce). Nonmedical reasons may be social, cultural, personal or religious. The procedure is commonly performed using either the dorsal slit or the sleeve technique. The dorsal slit is especially useful in patients who have phimosis. The sleeve technique may provide better control of bleeding in patients with large subcutaneous veins. A dorsal penile nerve block, with or without a circumferential penile block, provides adequate anesthesia. Informed consent must be obtained. Possible complications of adult circumcision include infection, bleeding, poor cosmetic results and a change in sensation during intercourse.
Labor Analgesia - Article
ABSTRACT: Regional analgesia has become the most common method of pain relief used during labor in the United States. Epidural and spinal analgesia are two types of regional analgesia. With epidural analgesia, an indwelling catheter is directed into the epidural space, and the patient receives a continuous infusion or multiple injections of local anesthetic. Spinal injections are usually single injections into the intrathecal space. A combination of epidural and spinal analgesia, known as a walking epidural, also is available. This technique combines the rapid pain relief from the spinal regional block with the constant and consistent effects from the epidural block. It allows sufficient motor function for patients to ambulate. Complications with regional analgesia are uncommon, but may include postdural puncture headache. Rare serious complications include neurologic injury, epidural hematoma, or deep epidural infection. Regional analgesia increases the risk of instrument-assisted vaginal delivery, and family physicians should understand the contraindications and risks of complications. Continuous labor support (e.g., doula), systemic opioid analgesia, pudendal blocks, water immersion, sterile water injections into the lumbosacral spine, self-taught hypnosis, and acupuncture are other options for pain management during labor.
ABSTRACT: When choosing an infiltrative anesthetic agent, the type of procedure, the length of time required for anesthesia, and the pharmacodynamics of each medication are important considerations. Distraction techniques and buffering with sodium bicarbonate can be used to decrease the pain associated with injection. Local cutaneous infiltration is the most commonly used anesthetic technique and involves direct injection into the area requiring anesthesia. Field blocks provide anesthesia by circumferentially blocking innervation to the area. Nerve blocks target the innervation to a specific area and are useful on the face and digits. Using easily identifiable landmarks, blockade of the supraorbital, supratrochlear, infraorbital, and mental nerves can provide site-specific anesthesia. Dorsal and palmar or plantar digital nerve blocks can be performed at a variety of locations on the hands and feet.