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, 20 (4), 343-9

A New Approach for Peri-Operative Analgesia of Cleft Palate Repair in Infants: The Bilateral Suprazygomatic Maxillary Nerve Block

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A New Approach for Peri-Operative Analgesia of Cleft Palate Repair in Infants: The Bilateral Suprazygomatic Maxillary Nerve Block

Malcie Mesnil et al. Paediatr Anaesth.

Abstract

Background: Congenital cleft palate (CP) is a common and painful surgical procedure in infants. CP repair is associated with the risk of postoperative airway obstruction, which may be increased with administration of opioids, often needed for analgesia. No described regional anesthesia technique can provide adequate pain control following CP repair in infants. The primary aim of this prospective and descriptive study was to observe the effectiveness of bilateral maxillary nerve blocks (BMB) using a suprazygomatic approach on pain relief and consumption of rescue analgesics following CP repair in infants. Analgesic consumption was compared to retrospective data. Complications related to this new technique in infants were also reviewed.

Methods: The landmarks and measurements recently defined in a three-dimensional study using computed tomography in infants were used. After general anesthesia, a BMB was performed bilaterally with 0.15 ml x kg(-1) 0.2% ropivacaine in infants scheduled for CP repair. Postoperative analgesia, administration of rescue analgesics, adverse effects, and time to feed were recorded in the 48-h period following surgery and compared to retrospective data.

Results: Thirty-three children, mean age 5 +/- 1.8 months and weight 8.3 +/- 1.2 kg, were studied. Eighteen patients out of 33 (55%) did not require additional opioids intra-operatively, vs two out of 20 (10%) without block. None needed morphine postoperatively, and intravenous nalbuphine was required in only six children (18%), vs 16 (80%) without block. Median time to feed was 8 h (range 2-24 h), vs 13 h (4-25) without block. No technical failure or complication related to the BMB was reported.

Conclusion: BMB using a suprazygomatic approach seems to improve pain relief, to decrease peri-operative consumption of opioids, and to favor early feeding resumption after CP repair in infants.

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