The role of paravertebral block in decreasing postoperative pain in elective breast surgeries
Background: Regional anesthesia is an alternative to general anesthesia in selected surgical settings. Paravertebral block as a regional anesthesia technique was compared with general anesthesia for elective breast surgeries regarding postoperative pain. Material/Methods: Sixty patients scheduled for breast surgery were randomized to two groups of 30 patients each: general anesthesia (control group) and paravertebral block (study group). Postoperative pain, the primary outcome variable of the study, was assessed by a numeric rating scale at 1, 3, and 6 hours during the postoperative period. Total amount of morphine and hospital stay were also recorded. Student's t-test and ANOVA were used to compare results. A p value less than 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The paravertebral group was found to have better postoperative pain relief (p=0.0000), reduced need for morphine (p=0.0000), and a shorter hospital stay (p=0.0000) compared with the general anesthesia group. Conclusions: The study suggests paravertebral block as a suitable alternative to general anesthesia in selected breast surgical patients regarding postoperative pain reduction. © Med Sci Monit, 2007.