BackgroundPain after cardiac surgery is both multifocal and multifactorial. Sternotomy, sternal retraction, internal mammary dissection, posterior rib dislocation or fracture, potential brachial plexus injury, and mediastinal and pleural drains all contribute to pain experienced in the immediate postoperative period. Ineffective pain management can result in systemic and pulmonary complications and significant cardiac consequences.
MethodsThis study compared the effectiveness of regional anesthesia techniques for perioperative pain management in cardiac surgery patients at our clinic. The effects of different analgesic methods, in terms of contributing to recovery, were examined.
ResultsThe records of 221 patients who had undergone coronary bypass surgery were evaluated retrospectively. The extubation rate in the operating room was 91%. No patient received balloon pump support, and 20 patients were transferred to the cardiovascular intensive care unit while intubated. Regional anesthesia was performed on two of these 20 patients, but not on the remaining 18. Examination of intraoperative and postoperative opioid consumption revealed significantly lower levels among patients receiving regional anesthesia. The most effective results among the regional anesthesia techniques applied were achieved with double injection erector spinae plane block.
ConclusionRegional anesthesia techniques severely limit opioid consumption during cardiac surgery. Their importance will gradually increase in terms of rapid recovery criteria. Based on our study results, double injection of the erector spinae plane block seems to be the most effective technique in cardiac surgery. We therefore favor the use of fascial plane blocks during such procedures. Trial Numbers The study is registered with ClinicalTrials (NCT05282303). Ethics committee registration and approval were Granted under Number 2021.464.IRB1.131.