Study Objective: To compare the effects of ropivacaine-fentanyl patient-controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) with morphine intravenous (IV) patient-controlled analgesia (PCA). Design: Prospective, randomized, multicenter trial. Setting: Five university-affiliated hospitals. Patients: 41 patients undergoing colon surgery. Interventions: Patients were randomized to receive either standardized combined epidural/general anesthesia followed by PCEA with ropivacaine 0.2% and fentanyl (2 μg/mL) or standardized general anesthesia followed by morphine IV PCA. All patients participated in a standardized postoperative clinical pathway. Measurements and Main Results: Analgesia was assessed with visual analog scale (VAS) scores. Postoperative recovery was assessed by completion of prospectively defined discharge milestones and time until discharge. Statistical analyses included nonparametric and contingency table analyses. The PCEA group had better analgesia (> 50% reduction in pain scores, assessed both at rest and during a cough) for the first 3 days after surgery (p < 0.0,005). The PCEA group achieved discharge milestones approximately 36 hours faster (p < 0.002), but time until discharge was similar between groups. Conclusions: Ropivacaine-fentanyl PCEA provides superior analgesia, reduced opioid requirement, and more rapid recovery after colon surgery.
- Analgesia epidural
- Analgesia patient-controlled
- Postoperative complications
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine