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Regional anaesthesia techniques

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Regional anaesthesia may be used on its own or with general anaesthesia to treat the obese patient. The forms of regional anaesthesia used are primarily epidural and spinal blockade to give analgesia and muscle relaxation at the required level.

Advantages include:

  • can be used in patient without sufficient reserve for general anaesthesia
  • improved postoperative respiratory function if continuous epidural infusion
  • decreased incidence of deep vein thrombosis

Difficulties include:

  • difficult access of the needles to their target space
  • potential sympathetic blockade and vasodilatation
  • further reduction in respiratory function

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