Background and Objectives Local anesthetics in blood absorbed from the epidural space attenuate bronchial hyperreactivity to chemical stimuli. However, it is not documented whether local anesthetics at clinically relevant concentrations improve active wheezing in patients with bronchial asthma.
Case report We managed a 60-year-old man with bronchial asthma and active wheezing under continuous epidural anesthesia using plain lidocaine. The wheezing gradually diminished 20 minutes after the epidural injection of 13 mL 2% lidocaine and completely disappeared over 155 minutes during continuous epidural injection of 2% lidocaine (6 mL/h). The plasma concentrations of lidocaine in arterial blood during the epidural anesthesia ranged from 2.5 to 3.9 μg/mL. Wheezing reappeared 55 minutes after termination of the continuous epidural injection of lidocaine. The plasma concentration of lidocaine at this time was 1.9 μg/mL.
Conclusions At clinically relevant concentrations, lidocaine in the blood absorbed from the epidural space may improve bronchospasm in patients with bronchial asthma.
- epidural anesthesia
- bronchial asthma
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