A comparative study of 0.25% ropivacaine and 0.25% bupivacaine for brachial plexus block

R. Hickey, C. L. Rowley, K. D. Candido, J. Hoffman, S. Ramamurthy, A. P. Winnie

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Abstract

The present study compares the effectiveness of 0.25% ropivacaine and 0.25% bupivacaine in 44 patients receiving a subclavian perivascular brachial plexus block for upper extremity surgery. The patients were assigned to two equal groups in this randomized, double-blind study; one group received ropivacaine 0.25% (112.5 mg) and the other, bupivacaine 0.25% (112.5 mg), both without epinephrine. Onset times for analgesia and anesthesia in each of the C-5 through T-1 brachial plexus dermatomes did not differ significantly between the two groups. The mean onset time for analgesia ranged from 11.2 to 20.2 min, and the mean onset time for anesthesia ranged from 23.3 to 48.2 min. The onset of motor block differed only with respect to paresis in the hand, with bupivacaine demonstrating a shorter onset time than ropivacaine. The duration of sensory and motor block also was not significantly different between the two groups. The mean duration of analgesia ranged from 9.2 to 13.0 h, and the mean duration of anesthesia ranged from 5.0 to 10.2 h. Both groups required supplementation with peripheral nerve blocks or general anesthesia in a large number of cases, with 9 of the 22 patients in the bupivacaine group and 8 of the 22 patients in the ropivacaine group requiring supplementation to allow surgery to begin. In view of the frequent need for supplementation noted with both 0.25% ropivacaine and 0.25% bupivacaine, we do not recommend using the 0.25% concentrations of these local anesthetics to provide brachial plexus block.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)602-606
Number of pages5
JournalAnesthesia and Analgesia
Volume75
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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    Hickey, R., Rowley, C. L., Candido, K. D., Hoffman, J., Ramamurthy, S., & Winnie, A. P. (1992). A comparative study of 0.25% ropivacaine and 0.25% bupivacaine for brachial plexus block. Anesthesia and Analgesia, 75(4), 602-606.