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Papers of the Week

2022 Apr 14

J Pers Med



Postoperative Analgesic Effectiveness of Peripheral Nerve Blocks in Cesarean Delivery: A Systematic Review and Network Meta-Analysis.


Ryu C G, Choi G J, Jung Y H, Baek C W, Cho C K, Kang H
J Pers Med. 2022 Apr 14; 12(4).
PMID: 35455750.


The purpose of this systematic review and network meta-analysis was to determine the analgesic effectiveness of peripheral nerve blocks (PNBs), including each anatomical approach, with or without intrathecal morphine (ITMP) in cesarean delivery (CD). All relevant randomized controlled trials comparing the analgesic effectiveness of PNBs with or without ITMP after CD until July 2021. The two co-primary outcomes were designated as (1) pain at rest 6 h after surgery and (2) postoperative cumulative 24-h morphine equivalent consumption. Secondary outcomes were the time to first analgesic request, pain at rest 24 h, and dynamic pain 6 and 24 h after surgery. Seventy-six studies (6278 women) were analyzed. The combined ilioinguinal nerve and anterior transversus abdominis plane (II-aTAP) block in conjunction with ITMP had the highest SUCRA (surface under the cumulative ranking curve) values for postoperative rest pain at 6 h (88.4%) and 24-h morphine consumption (99.4%). Additionally, ITMP, ilioinguinal-iliohypogastric nerve block in conjunction with ITMP, lateral TAP block, and wound infiltration (WI) or continuous infusion (WC) below the fascia also showed a significant reduction in two co-primary outcomes. Only the II-aTAP block had a statistically significant additional analgesic effect compared to ITMP alone on rest pain at 6 h after surgery (-7.60 (-12.49, -2.70)). In conclusion, combined II-aTAP block in conjunction with ITMP is the most effective post-cesarean analgesic strategy with lower rest pain at 6 h and cumulative 24-h morphine consumption. Using the six described analgesic strategies for postoperative pain management after CD is considered reasonable. Lateral TAP block, WI, and WC below the fascia may be useful alternatives in patients with a history of sensitivity or severe adverse effects to opioids or when the CD is conducted under general anesthesia.