Comparison of 0.5% Bupivacaine and 0.5% Ropivacaine epidurally in lower limb orthopaedic surgeries

Ushma D. Shah, Krunal N. Dudhwala, Mukesh S. Vakil


Background: Ropivacaine in equi-potent concentrations with bupivacaine, the degree of motor blockade is less pronounced with ropivacaine, and there is a greater propensity for blocking pain transmitting A-delta and C fibres rather than A-α motor fibres. It appears to have most of the blocking characteristics of bupivacaine. So we have undertaken the study to compare ropivacaine 0.5% (20ml) and bupivacaine 0.5% (20ml) for epidural anaesthesia in patients undergoing lower limb orthopaedic surgeries.

Methods: This double-blind, randomized study involves 60 patients who were undergone orthopaedic surgery, having ASA-I or ASA-II physical status. Out of 60, 30 patients received 20 ml of 0.5% ropivacaine and 30 patients received 20 ml of 0.5% bupivacaine at the L3, 4 interspace. Parameters measured were the onset time, duration and spread of sensory block, the onset time, peak time, duration and degree of motor block, the quality of anaesthesia and the heart rate and blood pressure profile during block onset.

Results: Epidurally, Ropivacaine in comparison to Bupivacaine provides quicker onset, early peak effect and prolonged duration of sensory block and shorter duration of motor block. Ropivacaine provides prolonged effective analgesia. It reduces requirement of rescue analgesics and related side effects.

Conclusions: Ropivacaine 0.5% is safer and effective alternative to Bupivacaine in epidural anaesthesia and post operative pain relief.


Bupivacaine, Epidural, Lower abdominal surgery, Ropivacaine

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