Surgical anaesthesia with haemodynamic stability and opioid-free analgesia in fragile patients can theoretically be provided with lumbosacral plexus blockade. We compared a novel ultrasound-guided suprasacral technique for blockade of the lumbar plexus and the lumbosacral trunk with ultrasound-guided blockade of the lumbar plexus. The objective was to investigate whether the suprasacral technique is equally effective for anaesthesia of the terminal lumbar plexus nerves compared with a lumbar plexus block, and more effective for anaesthesia of the lumbosacral trunk. Twenty volunteers were included in a randomised crossover trial comparing the new suprasacral with a lumbar plexus block. The primary outcome was sensory dermatome anaesthesia of L2-S1. Secondary outcomes were peri-neural analgesic spread estimated with magnetic resonance imaging, sensory blockade of dermatomes L2-S3, motor blockade, volunteer discomfort, arterial blood pressure change, block performance time, lidocaine pharmacokinetics and complications. Only one volunteer in the suprasacral group had sensory blockade of all dermatomes L2-S1. Epidural spread was verified by magnetic resonance imaging in seven of the 34 trials (two suprasacral and five lumbar plexus blocks). Success rates of the sensory and motor blockade were 88-100% for the major lumbar plexus nerves with the suprasacral technique, and 59-88% with the lumbar plexus block (p > 0.05). Success rate of motor blockade was 50% for the lumbosacral trunk with the suprasacral technique and zero with the lumbar plexus block (p < 0.05). Both techniques are effective for blockade of the terminal nerves of the lumbar plexus. The suprasacral parallel shift technique is 50% effective for blockade of the lumbosacral trunk.
Anaesthesia (oxford), 2014, Vol 69, Issue 11, p. 1227-40