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Regional anesthesia

Regional anesthesia is the term used for a variety of anesthetic procedures that abolish pain and partly inhibit the active mobility of specific body regions without impairing your consciousness in any way. By specific use of local anesthetics we inhibit - transiently and reversibly - your nerve conduction in the operative field. This is achieved either by a single injection or by the insertion of a pain catheter through which we are able to administer effective pain therapy after the operation as well.
  • Regional anesthesia may be used as the sole procedure for some operations. You will be entirely free of pain, but awake and responsive. If necessary we can also give you a tranquilizer or a soporific agent to put you into a state of twilight sleep.
  • In some cases we use regional anesthesia in combination with general anesthesia. We can thus utilize the advantages of regional anesthesia even during the operation. General anesthesia can be administered in these cases with fewer drugs, and still reliably ensures the necessary depth of sleep and stress shielding.
  • Besides, regional anesthesia is also used for the treatment of various types of pain syndromes.
Unfortunately, regional anesthesia does not achieve complete elimination of pain in all cases. In these rare cases the operation has to be continued in general anesthesia. Therefore, you must be in a fasting state before you are scheduled for regional anesthesia. At the preoperative anesthesia consultation your anesthetist will inform you about the last time you will be permitted to eat, drink or smoke.

A few medical reports may rule out the possibility of regional anesthesia:
  • Specific pre-existing neurological diseases
  • The intake of anticoagulant medication and
  • Changes in blood coagulation
Whether the use of regional anesthesia may be considered for your operation will be discussed with you by the anesthetist during the premedication step.

The combination of general anesthesia and regional anesthesia may influence certain interventions positively by:
  • Reducing the need of anesthetic agents
  • Shortening the recovery time
  • Ensuring you have no pain immediately after the operation and thus ensuring continuous pain treatment
Basically you will be cared for by our acute pain service around the clock. The insertion of catheters ensures that targeted pain therapy can be administered for several days.