Journal of Veterinary Medical Science
Online ISSN : 1347-7439
Print ISSN : 0916-7250
ISSN-L : 0916-7250
Epidural anesthesia in dogs undergoing hindlimb orthopedic surgery: effects of two injection sites
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2022 Volume 84 Issue 3 Pages 457-464


This prospective clinical trial evaluated the effects of epidural anesthesia (EA) placed at the lumbosacral compared to the L5–L6 junction in dogs undergoing hindlimb orthopedic surgery. In all, 98 dogs were randomly assigned to receive injection at either L7–S1 (LS group) or L5–L6 (LL group) at the same local anesthetic regimen (1 mg/kg bupivacaine 0.5% and 0.1 mg/kg morphine 1%). Fentanyl (1 µg/kg) was the intraoperative rescue analgesia (iRA) administered if mean arterial pressure increased by 30% above pre-stimulation value. Procedural failure, iRA, hypotension, motor block resolution, and postoperative side effects were recorded. There were 7/47 (15%) epidural procedural failures in the LS group and 8/51 (16%) (P=1.00) in the LL group; iRA was administered in 21/40 (52%) LS group dogs and in 13/43 (30%) LL group dogs, respectively (P=0.047). The incidence of hypotension was 10/40 (25%) and 16/43 (37%) in the LS group and the LL group, respectively (P=0.25). Proprioceptive residual deficit at 8 hr after EA was recorded in 3/26 (12%) in group LS dogs and in 13/26 (50%) group LL dogs, respectively (P=0.01). The proprioceptive residual deficit at 24 hr in one dog (LL group) resolved within 36 hr. No episodes of postoperative urinary retention, pruritus or neurological damage were recorded. The L5–L6 EA decreased significantly iRA but delays the proprioceptive recovery time. Further studies are needed to determine whether a lower bupivacaine dose reduces the duration of the residual block retaining the same incidence of iRA.

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© 2022 by the Japanese Society of Veterinary Science

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