Epidural block and outcome after major surgery

Paul S Myles, Ian Power and Konrad Jamrozik
Med J Aust 2002; 177 (10): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2002.tb04947.x
Published online: 18 November 2002

Patients undergoing surgery need good advice not only about whether a particular elective procedure is truly necessary and likely to be of benefit, but also about the nature and chances of an adverse outcome from the surgery itself. Those with heart failure, coronary artery disease, diabetes or emphysema are more likely to suffer serious complications or death after major surgery. Epidural anaesthesia and analgesia may be a preferable technique in such patients,1 as epidural block can attenuate the neurohumoral stress response to surgery,2 potentially improving postoperative cardiorespiratory function and reducing complications.

  • Paul S Myles1
  • Ian Power2
  • Konrad Jamrozik3

  • 1 Department of Anaesthesia, Alfred Hospital and Monash University, Melbourne, VIC.
  • 2 Department of Anaesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, The University of Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • 3 Imperial College Faculty of Medicine, London, UK.



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