• Twenty patients undergoing colonic resection were randomized to either conventional postoperative pain treatment with morphine chloride and acetaminophen (group 1, n=9) or methylprednisolone sodium succinate 90 minutes before surgery plus intraoperative neural blockade, with a postoperative analgesic regimen with combined bupivacaine hydrochloride—morphine and indomethacin sodium for systemic effect (group 2, n = 11). Assessments of pain, pulmonary function, convalescence, and various injury factors were done several times until 8 days after surgery. Postoperative pain and hyperthermic response were eliminated in group 2. Conventional reduction in pulmonary function measures was improved in group 2, and fatigue and mobility were less pronounced. Prostaglandin E2, interleukin 6, and C-reactive protein levels increased in both groups, but significantly less in group 2. These results suggest that a combined neural and humoral blockade may more effectively inhibit the global stress response to elective surgery than previously observed with neural blockade with or without indomethacin.
(Arch Surg. 1992;127:325-331)