OBJECTIVE: The primary aim of this pilot study was to assess feasibility and to evaluate if peri-operative pain management with regional analgesia resulted in decreased use of narcotic medication and earlier return to preoperative respiratory/nutritional status.
STUDY DESIGN: Cases were defined as infants who received regional analgesia as part of their perioperative anesthetic management. Controls were matched for surgical procedures without regional analgesia.
RESULTS: Fifteen cases were identified and matched with 17 controls. Infants undergoing inguinal hernia repair returned to baseline earlier and were not intubated. There was no difference in time to extubation in other thoracoabdominal surgeries. There was no difference in cumulative narcotic analgesia administered between the two groups.
CONCLUSION: Postoperative regional analgesia is feasible in neonates. Inguinal hernia repair with regional anesthesia was performed without intubation and returned to preoperative status earlier. No differences were observed with other surgeries. Further prospective, randomized, multicenter studies are needed.
Regional analgesia in neonates undergoing thoracoabdominal surgeries: A pilot study