Comparison of spinal and epidural anesthesia for patients younger than 50 years of age. Seeberger, M D; Lang, M L; Drewe, J; Schneider, M; Hauser, E; and Hruby, J Anesthesia and Analgesia, 78(4):667–673, April, 1994.
Comparison of spinal and epidural anesthesia for patients younger than 50 years of age [link]Paper  abstract   bibtex   
To evaluate the respective clinical value of spinal anesthesia with 24-gauge Sprotte needles and epidural anesthesia for younger subjects, 202 patients younger than 50 yr were assigned randomly to undergo one of these two techniques for orthopedic, vascular, urologic, or plastic surgery. Failed blocks occurred in 5% in each group. Spinal anesthesia resulted in significantly less time to achieve sufficient spread of block; a significantly lower incidence of incomplete sensory block at level L5/S1, incomplete motor block, and pain during surgery; and a significantly lower incidence of postlumbar puncture backache (11% vs 30% after epidural anesthesia). The incidence of postdural puncture headache (PDPH) in the spinal and epidural groups was 7% and 4%, respectively (P = not significant), and patient satisfaction was 97% and 93% (P = not significant). Our results demonstrate the effectiveness of both techniques in younger patients, but show that the spinal technique is associated with fewer limitations, suggesting that factors other than PDPH should be considered when choosing between these two techniques.
@article{seeberger_comparison_1994,
	title = {Comparison of spinal and epidural anesthesia for patients younger than 50 years of age},
	volume = {78},
	issn = {0003-2999},
	url = {http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8135385},
	abstract = {To evaluate the respective clinical value of spinal anesthesia with 24-gauge Sprotte needles and epidural anesthesia for younger subjects, 202 patients younger than 50 yr were assigned randomly to undergo one of these two techniques for orthopedic, vascular, urologic, or plastic surgery. Failed blocks occurred in 5\% in each group. Spinal anesthesia resulted in significantly less time to achieve sufficient spread of block; a significantly lower incidence of incomplete sensory block at level L5/S1, incomplete motor block, and pain during surgery; and a significantly lower incidence of postlumbar puncture backache (11\% vs 30\% after epidural anesthesia). The incidence of postdural puncture headache (PDPH) in the spinal and epidural groups was 7\% and 4\%, respectively (P = not significant), and patient satisfaction was 97\% and 93\% (P = not significant). Our results demonstrate the effectiveness of both techniques in younger patients, but show that the spinal technique is associated with fewer limitations, suggesting that factors other than PDPH should be considered when choosing between these two techniques.},
	number = {4},
	urldate = {2012-01-31TZ},
	journal = {Anesthesia and Analgesia},
	author = {Seeberger, M D and Lang, M L and Drewe, J and Schneider, M and Hauser, E and Hruby, J},
	month = apr,
	year = {1994},
	pmid = {8135385},
	keywords = {Adolescent, Adult, Anesthesia, Epidural, Anesthesia, Spinal, Evaluation Studies as Topic, Headache, Humans, Incidence, Marketingaktiv, Middle Aged, Prospective Studies, Spinal Puncture, Surgical Procedures, Operative},
	pages = {667--673}
}
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