Intravenous Regional Anesthesia Using a Forearm Tourniquet: A Safe and Effective Technique for Outpatient Hand Procedures

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Abstract

Background: Bier block provides anesthesia of an entire extremity distal to the tourniquet without necessitating direct injection at the surgical site. This avoids obscuring anatomy with local anesthetic and anesthetizes a wide area, allowing for multiple procedures and incisions. We hypothesize that a low-volume Bier block with forearm tourniquet, rather than a traditional brachial tourniquet, is a safe, well-tolerated, and effective anesthesia technique. Methods: All cases in which adult patients underwent hand procedures using Bier block anesthesia by a single surgeon over a 4-year period were reviewed. Data collected included patient demographics, procedure(s) performed, complications, tourniquet time and settings, procedure and in-room time, and supplemental medications administered. Results: In all, 319 patients were included, 103 from a university hospital and 216 from an ambulatory surgery center. The most commonly performed procedures were carpal tunnel release (205 cases) and trigger digit release (83 cases). Most patients received a 125-mg dose of lidocaine for the Bier block; many also received additional sedatives. Twenty-three patients received no additional medications. No patients required conversion to general anesthesia. One complication (0.3%) occurred, with paresthesias and tinnitus that resolved without intervention. The average tourniquet time was 24 minutes (SD = 4.3 minutes). Patients were discharged at a median of 49 minutes postoperatively, and 9.1% of patients received supplemental analgesics prior to discharge. Conclusions: Regional anesthesia achieved with a forearm tourniquet and intravenous local anesthetic provides adequate pain control, permits timely discharge home, and has a low complication rate. It should be considered for use in outpatient hand procedures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalHand
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

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Intravenous Anesthesia
Tourniquets
Conduction Anesthesia
Forearm
Outpatients
Hand
Anesthesia
Local Anesthetics
Trigger Finger Disorder
Intravenous Anesthetics
Tinnitus
Paresthesia
Lidocaine
Wrist
Hypnotics and Sedatives
Ambulatory Surgical Procedures
General Anesthesia
Analgesics
Anatomy
Arm

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Cite this

@article{598e52cb6add49ebad5854786637a752,
title = "Intravenous Regional Anesthesia Using a Forearm Tourniquet: A Safe and Effective Technique for Outpatient Hand Procedures",
abstract = "Background: Bier block provides anesthesia of an entire extremity distal to the tourniquet without necessitating direct injection at the surgical site. This avoids obscuring anatomy with local anesthetic and anesthetizes a wide area, allowing for multiple procedures and incisions. We hypothesize that a low-volume Bier block with forearm tourniquet, rather than a traditional brachial tourniquet, is a safe, well-tolerated, and effective anesthesia technique. Methods: All cases in which adult patients underwent hand procedures using Bier block anesthesia by a single surgeon over a 4-year period were reviewed. Data collected included patient demographics, procedure(s) performed, complications, tourniquet time and settings, procedure and in-room time, and supplemental medications administered. Results: In all, 319 patients were included, 103 from a university hospital and 216 from an ambulatory surgery center. The most commonly performed procedures were carpal tunnel release (205 cases) and trigger digit release (83 cases). Most patients received a 125-mg dose of lidocaine for the Bier block; many also received additional sedatives. Twenty-three patients received no additional medications. No patients required conversion to general anesthesia. One complication (0.3{\%}) occurred, with paresthesias and tinnitus that resolved without intervention. The average tourniquet time was 24 minutes (SD = 4.3 minutes). Patients were discharged at a median of 49 minutes postoperatively, and 9.1{\%} of patients received supplemental analgesics prior to discharge. Conclusions: Regional anesthesia achieved with a forearm tourniquet and intravenous local anesthetic provides adequate pain control, permits timely discharge home, and has a low complication rate. It should be considered for use in outpatient hand procedures.",
author = "Natalie Vaughn and Niraja Rajan and Michael Darowish",
year = "2018",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1558944718812190",
language = "English (US)",
journal = "Hand",
issn = "1558-9447",
publisher = "Springer New York",

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Intravenous Regional Anesthesia Using a Forearm Tourniquet

T2 - A Safe and Effective Technique for Outpatient Hand Procedures

AU - Vaughn, Natalie

AU - Rajan, Niraja

AU - Darowish, Michael

PY - 2018/1/1

Y1 - 2018/1/1

N2 - Background: Bier block provides anesthesia of an entire extremity distal to the tourniquet without necessitating direct injection at the surgical site. This avoids obscuring anatomy with local anesthetic and anesthetizes a wide area, allowing for multiple procedures and incisions. We hypothesize that a low-volume Bier block with forearm tourniquet, rather than a traditional brachial tourniquet, is a safe, well-tolerated, and effective anesthesia technique. Methods: All cases in which adult patients underwent hand procedures using Bier block anesthesia by a single surgeon over a 4-year period were reviewed. Data collected included patient demographics, procedure(s) performed, complications, tourniquet time and settings, procedure and in-room time, and supplemental medications administered. Results: In all, 319 patients were included, 103 from a university hospital and 216 from an ambulatory surgery center. The most commonly performed procedures were carpal tunnel release (205 cases) and trigger digit release (83 cases). Most patients received a 125-mg dose of lidocaine for the Bier block; many also received additional sedatives. Twenty-three patients received no additional medications. No patients required conversion to general anesthesia. One complication (0.3%) occurred, with paresthesias and tinnitus that resolved without intervention. The average tourniquet time was 24 minutes (SD = 4.3 minutes). Patients were discharged at a median of 49 minutes postoperatively, and 9.1% of patients received supplemental analgesics prior to discharge. Conclusions: Regional anesthesia achieved with a forearm tourniquet and intravenous local anesthetic provides adequate pain control, permits timely discharge home, and has a low complication rate. It should be considered for use in outpatient hand procedures.

AB - Background: Bier block provides anesthesia of an entire extremity distal to the tourniquet without necessitating direct injection at the surgical site. This avoids obscuring anatomy with local anesthetic and anesthetizes a wide area, allowing for multiple procedures and incisions. We hypothesize that a low-volume Bier block with forearm tourniquet, rather than a traditional brachial tourniquet, is a safe, well-tolerated, and effective anesthesia technique. Methods: All cases in which adult patients underwent hand procedures using Bier block anesthesia by a single surgeon over a 4-year period were reviewed. Data collected included patient demographics, procedure(s) performed, complications, tourniquet time and settings, procedure and in-room time, and supplemental medications administered. Results: In all, 319 patients were included, 103 from a university hospital and 216 from an ambulatory surgery center. The most commonly performed procedures were carpal tunnel release (205 cases) and trigger digit release (83 cases). Most patients received a 125-mg dose of lidocaine for the Bier block; many also received additional sedatives. Twenty-three patients received no additional medications. No patients required conversion to general anesthesia. One complication (0.3%) occurred, with paresthesias and tinnitus that resolved without intervention. The average tourniquet time was 24 minutes (SD = 4.3 minutes). Patients were discharged at a median of 49 minutes postoperatively, and 9.1% of patients received supplemental analgesics prior to discharge. Conclusions: Regional anesthesia achieved with a forearm tourniquet and intravenous local anesthetic provides adequate pain control, permits timely discharge home, and has a low complication rate. It should be considered for use in outpatient hand procedures.

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