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Sympathovagal effects of spinal anaesthesia with intrathecal or intravenous fentanyl assessed by heart rate variability.

Author(s): Fujiwara Y, Kurokawa S, Shibata Y, Asakura Y, Harado M, Komatsu T

Affiliation(s): Department of Anaesthesiology, Aichi Medical University, 21 Karimata Yazako, Nagakute, Aichi, Japan. yyoshiff@aichi-med-u.ac.jp

Publication date & source: 2009-04, Acta Anaesthesiol Scand., 53(4):476-82. Epub 2009 Feb 18.

Publication type: Randomized Controlled Trial

BACKGROUND: Although many investigators previously reported the sympathovagal effect of spinal anaesthesia, there is no information about the sympathovagal effects of supplementation with fentanyl. The aim of this study was to evaluate the sympathovagal effects of intrathecal or intravenous fentanyl added to spinal anaesthesia. METHODS: One hundred and twenty patients undergoing elective transurethral surgery under spinal anaesthesia were randomly allocated to receive intrathecally either isobaric bupivacaine alone (Group B), bupivacaine supplemented with intrathecal (Group Ft) or with intravenous fentanyl (Group Fv). Heart rate variability was estimated using the MemCalc method (Tarawa, Suwa Trust, Japan) before and after spinal anaesthesia. RESULTS: In all groups, spinal anaesthesia significantly decreased low frequency/high frequency (LF/HF) as a marker of sympathovagal balance. However, patients in Group B with a low block height developed a marked increase in LF/HF after spinal anaesthesia, which was attenuated in Group Ft. Meanwhile, intravenous fentanyl did not attenuate this response. CONCLUSION: We conclude that sympathetic activation observed in patients with a low block height was attenuated by intrathecal fentanyl but not by intravenous fentanyl.

Page last updated: 2009-10-20

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