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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 670-675

Comparison of epidural analgesia with transversus abdominis plane analgesia for postoperative pain relief in patients undergoing lower abdominal surgery: A prospective randomized study

1 Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, M. S. Ramaiah Medical College and Hospitals, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Anesthesiology, Manipal Hospitals, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Sadasivan Shankar Iyer
Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, M. S. Ramaiah Medical College and Hospitals, Bengaluru - 560 054, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0259-1162.206856

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Background: Anesthesiologists play an important role in postoperative pain management. For analgesia after lower abdominal surgery, epidural analgesia and ultrasound-guided transversus abdominis plane (TAP) block are suitable options. The study aims to compare the analgesic efficacy of both techniques. Materials and Methods: Seventy-two patients undergoing lower abdominal surgery under spinal anesthesia were randomized to postoperatively receive lumbar epidural catheter (Group E) or ultrasound-guided TAP block (Group T) through intravenous cannulas placed bilaterally. Group E received 10 ml 0.125% bupivacaine stat and 10 ml 8th hourly for 48 h. Group T received 20 ml 0.125% bupivacaine bilaterally stat and 20 ml bilaterally 8th hourly for 48 h. Pain at rest and on coughing, total paracetamol and tramadol consumption were recorded. Results: Analgesia at rest was comparable between the groups in the first 16 h. At 24 and 48 h, Group E had significantly better analgesia at rest (P = 0.001 and 0.004 respectively). Patients in Group E had significantly higher number of patients with nil or mild pain on coughing at all times. Paracetamol consumption was comparable in both groups, but tramadol consumption was significantly higher in Group T at the end of 48 h (P = 0.001). Conclusion: For lower abdominal surgeries, analgesia provided by intermittent boluses of 0.125% is comparable for first 16 h between epidural and TAP catheters. However, the quality of analgesia provided by the epidural catheter is superior to that provided by TAP catheters beyond that both at rest and on coughing with reduced opioid consumption.

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