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Anesth Essays Res. 2019 Jul-Sep;13(3):560-567. doi: 10.4103/aer.AER_93_19.

Efficacy of Epidural Dexamethasone Combined with Intrathecal Nalbuphine in Lower Abdominal Oncology Operations.

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Department of Anesthesia and Surgical Intensive Care, Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt.
Department of Surgical Oncology, Mansoura Oncology Center, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt.
Department of General Surgery, Mansoura University Hospital, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt.



Dragging pain during lower abdominal surgeries under intrathecal anesthesia is a common problem. Epidural steroid seemed to be effective in reducing intra and postoperative pain. Kappa receptor agonist like nalbuphine helps in reduction of visceral pain. Hence, this study was designed to detect the efficacy of epidural steroid dexamethasone with intrathecal Kappa opioid as a sole anesthetic technique in patients subjected to lower abdominal oncology operations.

Patients and Methods:

Patients were randomly allocated into two groups; epidural placebo group-control group (Group P) - Intrathecal injection of 20 μg fentanyl followed by intrathecal injection of (15 mg) of hyperbaric bupivacaine 0.5%, then (epidural injection placebo 15 mL volume of sterile saline 0.9%). Epidural dexamethasone group-study group (Group D) - Intrathecal injection of 0.6 mg nalbuphine followed by intrathecal injection of (15 mg) of hyperbaric bupivacaine 0.5% then (epidural injection of 8 mg dexamethasone in 15 mL total volume using sterile saline 0.9%).


Group D recorded significantly longer times to 1st analgesic request, sensory regression to S1 and modified bromage Score 0 with significant lower number of patients that had abdominal dragging pain in comparison with Group P. Visual analog score in the first four postoperative hours, total postoperative nalbuphine dose in 1st 24 h and incidence of nausea and vomiting were significantly lower in Group D. Heart rate and mean arterial pressure were comparable in both groups. Postoperative headache incidence was comparable in both groups. Both patient and surgeon satisfaction were significantly higher in Group D compared to Group P.


Combined epidural dexamethasone with intrathecal nalbuphine as a sole anesthetic technique during lower abdominal oncology operations could be an efficient anesthetic technique that offered better block characteristics, with more analgesia and as a result it gained better patient and surgeon satisfaction.


Combined spinal epidural; dexamethasone; fentanyl; intrathecal; nalbuphine; oncology

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