Anesthesiological considerations in shoulder surgery
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In 1970, Winnie proposed the brachial plexus block as an alternative and effective anaesthesia technique for shoulder surgery. From that date, several techniques have been developed to approach the brachial plexus: the use of a nerve stimulator and, more recently, the ultrasound guided nerve blockade have made the procedure easier and more effective; the availability of the new drugs demonstrates some major advantages due to the application of peripheral blocks. Nowadays the attention has been focused on postoperative pain control: although many techniques have been proposed, the application of a continuous infusion of local anaesthetics through an interscalene catheter seems the best available technique to achieve pain relief after shoulder surgery. Advantages ad disadvantages of regional anaesthesia and adverse events associated with interscalene brachial plexus blockade are reviewed.