Paravertebral Block for Post-Operative Analgesia after Breast Cancer Surgery, Effects of Adding Morphine: Double Blind, Randomised Clinical Trial

Abstract

Introduction: Thoracic paravertebral block (PVB) block is frequently used in breast cancer surgery for postoperative pain management. Adding opioids to local anaesthetics has been shown to have beneficial effects during epidural analgesia. Our hypothesis was that adding morphine to bupivacaine for PVB would improve analgesia provided by this procedure. Methods: 60 patients (25 - 75 years) undergoing elective surgery for breast cancer were randomly assigned to one of two groups. Both groups received a single injection thoracic paravertebral block; group BAM with 20 ml 0.5% bupivacaine, epinephrine and morphine while group BA received identical block except morphine was given subcutaneously. All patients had general anaesthesia. Results: Severity of pain and nausea was low in both groups. Pain scores remained below 20/100 after the first 2 hours throughout the 72 hours of the study. There was no significant difference between the groups in pain scores, consumption of additional morphine or nausea scores. Shoulder mobility was also very good in both groups. Conclusion: Thoracic paravertebral block with bupivacaine and epinephrine was associated with good postoperative analgesic effects and low incidence of nausea and vomiting. The addition of morphine to the local anaesthetic solution in paravertebral block did not have any additional analgesic effects.

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G. Björnsson, A. Johannesdottir, B. Valtysson and G. Sigurdsson, "Paravertebral Block for Post-Operative Analgesia after Breast Cancer Surgery, Effects of Adding Morphine: Double Blind, Randomised Clinical Trial," Open Journal of Anesthesiology, Vol. 3 No. 2, 2013, pp. 116-121. doi: 10.4236/ojanes.2013.32028.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

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