JOURNAL ARTICLE

Safety and efficacy of forefoot surgery under ankle block anaesthesia

D F Russell, A Pillai, C S Kumar
Scottish Medical Journal 2014, 59 (2): 103-7
24694562

BACKGROUND: Ankle block as the sole anaesthetic for forefoot surgery is not used uniformly throughout the UK despite obvious advantages and widespread use internationally.

AIM: Evaluation of safety and effectiveness of performing elective forefoot surgery under ankle block anaesthesia alone in a pilot cohort of patients in a Scottish unit.

METHODS: Data were collected from 81 consecutive forefoot procedures (71 patients) using a standardised questionnaire including incremental pain assessment (0-10; 0 no pain, 10 severe pain).

RESULTS: Seven patients reported pain during surgery; average score 0.17. Average pain scores 6, 12, 24 and 48 h following surgery were 1.5, 3.09, 2.3 and 1.9, respectively. All patients were discharged home and walking on the same day.

CONCLUSION: Forefoot surgery under ankle block alone may be safe and effective. Anaesthesia obtained permitted routine forefoot procedures and provided lasting post-operative analgesia. Combined with intra-operative sedation, use of ankle tourniquet and same day discharge, it had very high patient acceptance and satisfaction.

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