Assessing bupivacaine 10mg/fentanyl 20 μg as an intrathecal test dose

P. Dalal, Felicity Reynolds, C. Gertenbach, H. Harker, G. O'Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


After ethics committee approval and verbal consent, women undergoing elective caesarean section given spinal anaesthesia with hyperbaric 0.5% bupivacaine 10mg (2mL) plus fentanyl 20 μg (spinal group, n = 20) and women requesting epidural analgesia in labour given the same drugs and doses epidurally, either in the same concentration (epidural small volume group, n = 10) or as 10 mL of 0.1% bupivacaine plus fentanyl 20 μg (epidural large volume group, n = 12) were recruited. The temperature of the great toes, sensory block on the outer ankle (S1 dermatome), motor block at the ankle and haemodynamic changes were recorded every 2 min for 10 min. There was a significant rise in foot temperature only in the spinal group. At four minutes a combination of warm toes and motor or sensory block, usually both, were seen only in the spinal groups. Haemodynamic changes were non-specific. We conclude that bupivacaine 10 mg with fentanyl 20 μg is a reliable agent to detect intrathecal placement by 4 min by which time a combination of motor and sensory block at the ankle and toe warming should be present.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)250-255
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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